As I mentioned in the previous post, we have very few paraliturgical hymns or “spiritual songs” for the time from Pascha to Pentecost, so I am considering the possibility of including new settings of liturgical hymns for this season in the forthcoming hymnal.
In the last post, we looked at some additional settings of the Paschal troparion (“Christ is risen from the dead”). We might also want to provide a Paschal setting of the Cherubic Hymn or Cherubikon; here is one based on the Paschal hypakoje (“The women with Mary before the dawn”) which has been used for many years at Saint Elias Byzantine Catholic Church in Munhall, PA:
and after the commemorations:
I have also prepared matching versions of “We praise you, we bless you” and the four Communion Hymns which are always sung in the Paschal season (for Pascha, Thomas Sundays, other Sundays, and Mid-Pentecost).
Now, I think there are certainly some Cherubic Hymn settings out there which are sort of so-so, but there are also some that are quite good, and usable in English. If you have one of your own, consider sending it in! Years ago, the Inter-Eparchial Music Commission discussed the possibility of taking such settings, looking them over, perhaps making some tweaks as needed, and adding them gradually to our repertoire. I am not sure if the new hymal is the best place to publish them, but the hymnal process may be a good place to start.
Similarly, we have one setting of the Our Father for use in the Paschal season, based on the Paschal canon (DL 167-168):
But here is another from St. Elias in Munhall, based on the Paschal hypakoje, “The women with Mary before the dawn):
This, too, is music we could probably use right away in some parishes. Especially if weekday Divine Liturgies are held, there are a lot of opportunities to sing the Lord’s prayer!
I have taken all this music and combined it with the Paschal troparion settings from yesterday into a music supplement for Pascha. Tomorrow, we will look at our one real Paschal hymn, “Christ is risen! Joy from heaven” and see how that might fit into the picture.
Please leave your thoughts about this music – or other liturgical settings we might like to have for the Paschal season – in a comment below!