Skip to comments.Pope blesses new organ (1000 y/o Basilica “Our Lady of the Old Chapel”)
Posted on 09/13/2006 8:19:12 AM PDT by NYer
This venerable house of God, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Old Chapel, has been splendidly refurbished and today receives a new organ, which will now be blessed and solemnly dedicated to its proper aim: the glorification of God and the strengthening of faith.
An important contribution to the renewal of sacred music in the nineteenth century was made by a canon of this collegiate church, Carl Joseph Proske. Gregorian chant and classic choral polyphony were integrated into the liturgy. The attention given to liturgical sacred music in the Old Chapel was so significant that it reached far beyond the confines of the region, making Regensburg a centre for the reform of sacred music, and its influence has continued to the present time.
In the Constitution on Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council (Sacrosanctum Concilium), it is emphasized that the combination of sacred music and words forms a necessary or integral part of the solemn liturgy (No. 112). This means that music and song are more than an embellishment of worship; they are themselves part of the liturgical action. Solemn sacred music, with choir, organ, orchestra and the singing of the people, is not an addition of sorts that frames the liturgy and makes it more pleasing, but an important means of active participation in worship. The organ has always been considered, and rightly so, the king of musical instruments, because it takes up all the sounds of creation and gives resonance to the fullness of human sentiments. By transcending the merely human sphere, as all music of quality does, it evokes the divine. The organs great range of timbre, from piano through to a thundering fortissimo, makes it an instrument superior to all others. It is capable of echoing and expressing all the experiences of human life. The manifold possibilities of the organ in some way remind us of the immensity and the magnificence of God.
Psalm 150 speaks of trumpets and flutes, of harps and zithers, cymbals and drums; all these musical instruments are called to contribute to the praise of the triune God. In an organ, the many pipes and voices must form a unity. If here or there something becomes blocked, if one pipe is out of tune, this may at first be perceptible only to a trained ear. But if more pipes are out of tune, dissonance ensues and the result is unbearable. Also, the pipes of this organ are exposed to variations of temperature and subject to wear. Now, this is an image of our community. Just as in an organ an expert hand must constantly bring disharmony back to consonance, so we in the Church, in the variety of our gifts and charisms, always need to find anew, through our communion in faith, harmony in the praise of God and in fraternal love. The more we allow ourselves, through the liturgy, to be transformed in Christ, the more we will be capable of transforming the world, radiating Christs goodness, his mercy and his love for others.
The great composers, each in his own way, ultimately sought to glorify God by their music. Johann Sebastian Bach wrote above the title of many of his musical compositions the letters S.D.G., Soli Deo Gloria to God alone be glory. Anton Bruckner also prefaced his compositions with the words: Dem lieben Gott gewidmet dedicated to the good God. May all those who enter this splendid Basilica, experiencing the magnificence of its architecture and its liturgy, enriched by solemn song and the harmony of this new organ, be brought to the joy of faith.
Personal secretary of the Pontiff Georg Gaenswein, back, dresses Pope Benedict XVI, front, prior his entrance to the Old Chapell in Regensburg, southern Germany, Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2006. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
Wonderful photos. Thank you.
Oh, my garwsh! Forget about H2aH. Look at that magnificent ceiling. That is breath taking! Wonder if the Cathedral has a high altar?
A few years ago my child went to Europe with her orchestra. She went to St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna. She said it was so beautiful she actually cried. She got me a beautiful rosary. She couldn't find a priest to bless it so she dipped it in holy water.
In fact, I think that I might forward his comment on music and liturgy to botoh our music director and our priests.
Isn't this old basilica simply magnificent!
Thank you for the advance notice. This segment will be re-aired tonight at 10pm. Did the pope play the organ? .... or at least attempt to?
Has the Pope heard of that one chapel that's playing the 639-year-long concert? I kid you not; there is a group that has set up an organ to play the John Cage opus As Slow As Possible-Squared. This is one piece that definitely lives up to its name, because its backers figure it will take about 639 years to play in its entirety! Don't ask why they're doing this.
The church was filled and the setting was breathtaking. Excellent choir, too. DO not miss the re-airing; it will be well worth your time.
Also, EWTN thankfully supplied a translator, in case your German is rusty (mine sure is...I got about every 5th word...lol).
Went to pope's Mass in Regensburg - lovely!
Been to this chapel several times - magnificent - though baroque/rococo is not my preference.
So happy to have him as our pope.
Did you read his lecture? Wow.
Yesterday?!!! Are you in any of the photos? :-)
Posted his lecture at the University and his homily from last night's Vespers. I am awestruck at his homilies, lectures and beautiful liturgies. We are indeed blessed to have him as our pope. Viva Il Papa!
I was in the back row - doubtful that we are in any photos.
Brought 4 of my kids. It was lovely. Everything went to schedule, as the Germans are kown for. We took the train and brought a picnic. It was sunny and 71 degrees. Just perfect. And my kids could even understand some of the German!
The Cathedral has a high altar, but not the original. It is a beautiful gothic treasure. And not many tourists. The spires are gorgeous but were only complete a hundred years ago!
The front door area is beautiful and highly ornamented, but has been scafolded and behind wooden walls for 3 years, so I am anxious to see it now that they removed it, restored, for Papa's visit!
We like to go to Mass with the amazing boys choir and then cross the street for Sunday brunch in a 500 year old gothic dining room.
Seeing the entrance completed will be a nice treat.
Every inch of this has been freshly restored and gilded for Papa.
Not my style, but you can tell when something is exceptionally well-done even if it does not suit your own personal taste!
The theme of the visit was "Who believes is never alone."
(Wer glaubt ist nie allein.)
A song was composed - very beautiful and classic in style.
Very moving. I had sung it at German Mass in the pariosh a few times and it was less than lovely. But given the full orchestra and traditional formal chorus, it was stunning - and a moment of solidarity for all of us in Bavaria who had been awaiting the visit of Papa Benedikt with joy and love.
We were alone, then we came together under Papa, and then we left realizing (having been reminded, really) that we are NOT alone.
He also challenged us not to be part of the moral filth and infifference - to stand out and stand up when neccessary, lest we be part of the problem.
And he invoked a special blessing for all in the crowd named (like my daughter) who share the name of Mary - on the feast of her name.
When we went to Rome, we heard Papa speak give his Weds catechesis on St. Peter, and when we went to his Mass in Regensburg we celebrated a feast of Our Lady.
So many blessings - that I could appreciate them all more fully!
What a special blessing for your daughter. She will remember this day throughout the rest of her life.