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Vatican instructions on liturgical music, architecture coming soon

November 22, 2011

The Vatican will soon unveil a “liturgical art and sacred music commission,” and issue new guidelines for the construction of churches and the renewal of liturgical music, according to Andrea Tornielli of La Stampa.

Tornielli—who has compiled an enviable record for predicting new developments in the pontificate of Benedict XVI—says that the new commission will mark an important step in the Pontiff’s long-cherished plan for a “reform of the reform” in the liturgy.

The commission will be part of the Congregation for Divine Worship, Tornielli reports. He notes that in September, Pope Benedict relieved that congregation of its responsibility for several canonical issues, explaining that the Congregation for Divine Worship should devote its energies primarily to “giving fresh impetus to the promotion of the Church’s sacred liturgy.”

That congregation, under the leadership of Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, will now issue instructions on liturgical music, architecture, and art, Tornielli reports. These instructions will be designed to insure that all artistic elements are oriented toward a reverent celebration of the liturgy.


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  • Posted by: koinonia - Nov. 23, 2011 8:22 PM ET USA

    And meanwhile, let's not forget the reverent celebration of the liturgy that is available in the Extraordinary Form as the "reform of the reform" is patiently being implemented by His Holiness. Ultimately the liturgy is inextricably linked to the worship of God in light of Catholic doctrine, and the concept of irreverent liturgical practice seems to be a contradiction in terms, liturgically speaking. Is there enough unity of faith among Catholics today for this to be a peaceful process?

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Nov. 23, 2011 7:12 PM ET USA

    Actually, the instruction Musicam Sacram was pretty clear about what to do in music. The real question is "will anyone pay attention to this instruction?" The trash that is being hauled out for the new Mass translations should be the first thing to recycle.

  • Posted by: kathimcnamee11450 - Nov. 23, 2011 6:32 PM ET USA

    Praise the Lord!!!

  • Posted by: mwean7331 - Nov. 23, 2011 5:59 PM ET USA

    I have praying for this news since we lost so many beautiful and sacred things in our churches (the music, the statues anc churches that looked like churches instead of meeting halls. Deo Gratias