OVERALL DESCRIPTION...........Here presented in the form of a choral octavo, is an English-language setting of the famous Svaty Boze. First published in The Johannine Hymnal, by ACP, this setting of the Trisagion [triSAHgeeawhn], the "thrice-holy," is presented here in four languages: Latin, Greek, Old Slavonic, and English. The standard arrangement by Bortniansky is presented, much as it is sung today in the Divine Liturgy of the Ukrainian, Russian, Belarussian, Serbian, and Bulgarian Churches. Also included is a setting based upon the original arrangement of the Trisagion, as an antiphon for an entrance song at the celebration of the Eucharist, the Divine Liturgy, in the Church of Constantinople, once known as Byzantium. Both settings in this octavo are intended for use in the Roman Rite, as part of the celebration of the Mass...........MUSICAL SETTINGS IN THIS OCTAVO.......... As in Byzantine Churches, the first setting of the Trisagion in this octavo involves a threefold repetition of the antiphon: "Sancte Deus," then "Hagios ho Theos," then "Svyaty Bozhe." There follows in English the doxology, "Glory Be to the Father," then the antiphon once again, "Holy God." Alternatively, the choir could sing the entire song just in English, by singing the antiphon three times at the beginning in that language, instead of in Latin, Greek, and Old Slavonic...........HISTORICAL OVERVIEW.......... As in the early Byzantine Rite of the "Great Church," Hagia Sophia, the cathedral of Constantinople, there was a different use of the Trisagion. The second setting in this octavo represents this practice. Here, there was separate music for the choir, the people, and the cantor. All three had their own form of participation. For example, the choir would sing the antiphon three times at the beginning and at the very end of the song. In between, as the entrance procession went on, a cantor would sing the verses of a Psalm. The people would respond to each verse with a simple refrain, in this case, "Holy, Immortal One, have mercy on us." [It is also possible that the entire phrase, "Holy God," etc. served as a refrain.] Use of a simple refrain such as this enables the people to participate without looking down into a hymnal and to sing their part from memory; in this way, they would be able to look at the ministers in procession, moving through the church and into the sanctuary. The procession would conclude with the cantor singing the doxology, the "Glory Be to the Father," and the refrain repeated one last time by the people, then the antiphon once by the choir. If more verses were needed, the cantor would begin again with verse one. If fewer verses were needed, the cantor would simply cut the Psalm short and end with the doxology...........WIDESPREAD USE OF THE TRISAGION.......... For more extensive background on the history of the Trisagion, visit our ACP Publications website, for this specific octavo. Not only in Slavic and Greek-speaking regions but also in the Middle East, the Trisagion is used in the Byzantine Rite liturgies of the Melkite tradition, especially in Palestine and Egypt. Long ago, however, before the Melkites came into being, the Trisagion had spread into the Churches of Armenia, Georgia, Syria, Palestine, and Egypt, making use of the local language, rather than the original Greek. In the West, the Trisagion was widely sung in the Gallican Rite, celebrated once in present-day Ireland, Scotland, England, France, and part of Spain. There, it was sung at the beginning of Mass, after the opening greeting and again before and after the Gospel. In Rome, the Trisagion has long been sung on Good Friday, in both Greek and Latin. In many respects, then, the Trisagion is a catholic song, found throughout the world...........ABOUT THE COMPOSER.......... Dmytro Bortniansky [1751-1825] wrote this music in three parts, for soprano, alto, and bass, intending his work to be sung in the regular celebration of the Eucharist. All over Eastern Europe, the "Svyaty Bozhe" is still sung in this arrangement; the same antiphon is also used in other liturgies and in private prayer. In his generation, Bortniansky was the dominant figure in choral music in Eastern Europe, in both composition and direction. He was a remarkable, creative genius who left the Church a lasting legacy, of inestimable worth. He is still considered by many as the greatest Ukrainian composer of religious and liturgical music.
Here presented in the form of a choral octavo, saddle-stiched, with two staples, is an English-language setting of the famous Dostoyno Jest. This is a song of praise to the Virgin Mary, sung in the Byzantine Liturgy, during the Anaphora, the Eucharistic Prayer, after the invocation of the Holy Spirit, the epiclesis. In the Roman Liturgy, It Is Right and Just would be sung at another time in the celebration. This song would be especially appropriate during Advent and on Feasts of Mary, such as January 1, August 15, December 8 and 12, and similar occasions. Here is the text of this song: It is right and just to bless you, O Virgin Mary, holy, humble, ever loyal; and, among all women, O how blest are you. More honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare, more glorious than the Seraphim, who gave birth to Jesus Christ, the living Word of God. O Mary, Mother of the Lord, we praise you, now and forever. As well as SATB music, this booklet also provides some history of this song, pastoral notes, and biographical information about the composer, Dmytro Bortniansky.
This SATB choral octavo is saddle-stitched, with two staples. Here is a summary of the contents: The core of Jewish liturgy, morning and evening, is the Shema [Hear, O Israel], with its blessings before and afterward. For over two thousand years, devout Jews have prayed these words over and over again. This profession of faith is central to both the Jewish and the Christian religion. It is also certainly the daily prayer of Jesus Christ; see Luke 10:26-28. The Shema, with its blessings, is included in both Lauds and Vespers in the American Catholic Hymnbook. The Shema is central to our faith, our tradition, and our union with Jesus Christ. This booklet is illustrated by the renowned Virginia Broderick. On the inside title page is an image of Jesus Christ, with the words of the Shema: "Love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul and with all your mind." Each of the seven blessings is followed by a unison acclamation for the congregation, "Blest be God! Blest be God!" with a simple four-part accompaniment. The full text of each blessing, as in the American Catholic Hymnbook, is printed in place, in sequential order. Also included, underneath a menorah, is the Gregorian Chant Antiphon that forms the musical basis for this arrangement, Jerusalem, Surge, with its notes in traditional Chant format. Also included in this booklet is a brief history of the Shema, a listing of some books for further study, and a copy of the unison settings that can be copied, for use in the local parish or school, for the congregation. Christians and Jews both profess faith in only one God, the same God who revealed himself to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to Sarah, Rebekah, and Rachel. In opposition to those who worship other gods, those who worship other realities, we believe that there is only one God, that he alone is sovereign, that he alone is worthy of adoration. In fact, our first duty is to love him above all things. As Catholics remember from the Baltimore catechism, our first duty is "to know him, to love him, and to serve him." The seven blessings that precede and follow the Shema are themselves ancient, going back perhaps to 200 A.D. or earlier. Their form is that of the biblical berakah, which begins by praising God ["blessing" him], perhaps including a petition, and concludes with another statement of praise. Similar prayers are said during Mass by the priest, over the bread and wine, at the Preparation of the Gifts. This format of prayer, the berakah, was that used by Jesus Christ and the first Christians, especially at mealtime, other daily prayer, and at weekend worship.