Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Funeral this morning that I get to pick the music for. Does that ever happen to anyone else? What do you pick? I want to pick things that people have a chance at knowing, but I won't use the "typicals." (for oft discussed reasons...)

Here's my picks for today:

O God Our Help in Ages Past
The King of Love My Shepherd Is
Keep in Mind
Amazing Grace

what songs would other people pick?


Gavin said...

I have a policy that I pick all music for funerals, but accomodate any requests. Often people come to me with 4 requests, so I just go with what they want. I also reserve the right to give a solid "no" to any music, and my boss has assured me of his 100% support of me if I should use that right (I haven't thusfar).

I really don't see where the whole idea came about that the family should pick hymns. You and I get paid to pick hymns for Sunday Mass. That implies a few things: that it is a skill, and/or that it requires our time or energy. Don't get me wrong (and I'm sure many would), I totally believe in being accomodating, no matter how much we may not like the requests. I'm just saying the primary planning decisions should remain in our control.

Brian Michael Page said...

Excellent choices, Mara, especially for Lent. Outside of Lent I often open with "For All the Saints" (I don't use it during Lent because it ends with Alleluias).

I too believe in being accomodating for funerals, but to an extent. I can guarantee you if I must do Beagle's Things, it will NOT be the responsorial Psalm. I am a stickler for the Psalm being from the Lectionary (for the Mass for the Dead), and the recessional being the In Paradisum (or translation thereof, even if the music leans towards contemporary, like say they want the Sands "Song of Farewell", I'll bite if the text is there). By default, I often do the chant In Paradisum, in Latin.


Leticia said...

I love the spiritual, "Precious Lord, Take My Hand", and had it sung for my Grandfather's funeral. I also love "Abide With Me".

Anonymous said...

Brian, a question:

What exactly is SUPPOSED to go on at a funeral after the post-communion collect? I get the idea that what goes on at my parish is more a hodge-podge of odd things than the actual rite. As it is:
- commendation prayers (I think)
- "Song of Farewell" set to the Old Hundredth (you may know this from WLP's hymnals) which seems to be an awkward paraphrase of the Subvenite
- then Father chants the In Paradisum in Latin
- Of course, the Closing Hymn follows, which doesn't really get sung since the whole church takes part in the procession out.

Are you familiar with the proper rubrics for this?


PhiMuAlpha2681 said...


What you list is what's in the rite. There are two options for the commendation prayer, followed by the incensation. The two options to be sung at the incensations are the "Saints of God, come to his/her/their aid" (which I think the OLD HUNDREDTH you mention is an adaptation of), or "I Know that My Redeemer Lives" (I prefer and use exclusively the Howard Hughes setting). After the incensation is a final prayer, and then the "In Paradisum" (or adaptation thereof) during the procession out of the church. That's all.


Brian Michael Page said...

Gavin, all of what you and Nick said, but the In Paradisum IS the recessional hymn, according to the rites.
Most visiting priests I've worked with often say the In Paradisum just before they part, simply because out in my neck of the woods, they rightly assume that about 95% of the musicians will close with anything but. If you do the right thing, you might be messin' with their heads a little bit LOL!