“Congrega nos” – in 6/8

This is really clever! Too bad Pius X forebade the piano in 1903 in Tra le sollecitudine – I don’t believe he mentioned the guitar by name, though.


  1. Not by name, but it would require the ability to “make it suitable for Sacred use”. I have always wondered what exactly that phrase means…something like making a hot dog suitable for gourmet use?

    1. I beg to differ. A guitar, well played, is a fine
      instrument for sacred use.
      A guitar, poorly played, has no place
      in the sacred. (pretty much like the organ!)

    2. “something like making a hot dog suitable for gourmet use?”

      Apparently you’ve never been to Chicago. 🙂

      1. To complete the off-topic traverse… I miss Chicago-style hot dogs. I made up a bedtime story about them for Thomas this week.

  2. I understand that the piano was banned, but since then, things have, once again, changed. Gather Us In can be played on the organ, but in Latin? For those of us who were born around 1960, we grew up w/ English, would we have to teach an entire congregation Latin? We live in the United States where the language is English. Just curious, how would that work???????

    1. Yup. In the Old Testament, in the New Testament, and throughout the history of the Church east and west, there has been a wide diversity of instruments used in worship.

      Then there is the sharp sacred/secular divide and the effort to drive everything secular out of the Church – this is an ancient tradition dating to the end of the 19th century.


  3. Well, having first encountered this version at Damien Thompson’s blog, I am grateful and hopeful that further combox reflections here don’t display the, ahem, flamboyance of those 200+ at Mr. Thompson’s.
    I will defend the use of diverse instruments at liturgy ’til I die, and not fundmentally argue the primacy of the organ. However, only the witless would persevere in using the “King of Instruments” as the sole accompiment of 6/8 or most triple metered modern songs such as GUI or Glory and Praise to our God, etc.
    The issue, at hand, is the honing and blending of artistry and intuition in the assignment and performance of those diverse instruments. Trial and error has and will always remain a part of deliberating that issue.
    Now, to the version of GUI in Latin- okay, it is clever.
    Did its translator intend this cleverness to advance the nature of the song for a purpose, particularly a merited purpose? Does singing “in buildings confining….” in Latin essentially impart more credence to the text than in a vernacular? Does it make the songs’ unbelievably ubiquitous use (other than at our parish) a novelty worth imposing upon our congregations’ sensibilities because it is now “available” in the Church’s Mother tongue? (When I first heard it, so fractionated and syllabic, I wondered if it was Portuguese or Spanish!)
    Oy. If I wanted to teach my K-8 kids Latin fun texts, I’ll stick with that book that starts with “Old MacDonald had a farm” Thanks.

  4. I thought it was all just good fun, and I posted it in that spirit. I choose to continue to believe that.

    1. I never occurred to me that this would be a serious endeavor. I took it to be along the lines of the CD I have of Elvis songs in Latin.

  5. As they say in Texas, Father, “Well, Okay, then!”
    No harm, no foul.
    But if you want to stay with good fun, do NOT go to Thompson’s blog combox on this. Yikes, those Brits!

  6. “The lute is silver, the guitar gold” — Chopin.
    “Nothing is more beautiful than the sound of a guitar, except the sound of two guitars” – Chopin.

  7. When I was little and overheard some grownups talk about how Mass used to be in Latin, this is pretty much what I thought they were talking about. I pretty much assumed that the pre-Vatican II Mass was identical in every way to the post Vatican II Mass save for being in Latin and having better architecture (even as a little kid I loathed our dark 1970’s roundhouse church).

    I remember wondering what “Eagles Wings” must have sounded like when people sang it in Latin.

  8. I love the guitar, but not in the liturgy, in the styles of rock, pop etc.

    The organ has been our official liturgics instrument for centuries, but the human voice is obviously the best of all instruments because of it nature. Music is such a sticky topic, yet if you follow the directives from Rome, all should be well with you.There is no question left unanswered unless you prefer private revelations received at the Parish Pastoral Council!

    The organ and Gregorian chant will have pride of place in liturgical worship….till Sunday comes around!

    BTW: Congrega nos sounds worse in Latin! A Te Deum perhaps?

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