Saint Joseph the Worker: Chant-hunt in the books

Let us do some exercise.

_DSC0224Get your copy of the Liber usualis. (You can also get your copy of the Graduale Romanum.) Since today is the start of the novena for the feast of Saint Joseph the Worker, let us locate his propers. Naturally, these will have to be in the proper of the saints. What more, it falls on 1 May, so finding it should be not difficult, because it will have to appear immediately after the heading announcing the feasts of May. If you fail to find these, try looking again. You might have just overlooked them in your haste.

If you found it on your first, second, and third try, congratulations! You’re probably holding a 1961 edition of the Liber. If you’ve scanned the index at the back, perused the calendar at the front, looked at each page of the section for May, and found nothing—absolutely nothing, zilch, nil, nada!—then you’re holding either a 1954 or 1957 edition.

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Right to left, down: (1) Feasts for May begins with SS. Philip and James in the 1954 Liber usualis, a year before the feast was established; (2) feasts for May begin with S. Athanasius in the 1957 Liber usualis, two years after the feast was established, and one year after the new propers were approved; (3) feasts for May begin with Saint Joseph the Workman in the 1961 Maryknoll Missal, six years after the feast was established, five years after its propers were approved,and  one year after the melodies were published.

Why is finding the propers edition-dependent? Well, the simplified answer is this: The feast is new. But, as everything embosomed by Holy Mother Church can assume layers of meaning, the real answer is as expected rather nuanced. For there appears to have been a blueprint materialising in the innovative minds of the reformers of that time, and to its consequences we are now heirs. We will split this discussion into three parts in the hope that more will be coaxed to take a second glace at the smaller helpings. In the meantime, let us ask Saint Joseph in these trying times, to guide all of us who look upon him as our champion and the protector of Holy Mother Church, that we may offer our travails, our labours, our sorrows, for the preservation of the Holy Catholic Faith.

Ut in omnibus laudetur Dominus.

|» Next part: Timeline of the institution

2 thoughts on “Saint Joseph the Worker: Chant-hunt in the books

  1. Pingback: Saint Joseph the Worker: Timeline of institution – Cappella Gregoriana Sanctæ Cæciliæ olim Xicatunensis

  2. Pingback: Saint Joseph the Worker: Propers in chant – Cappella Gregoriana Sanctæ Cæciliæ olim Xicatunensis

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