Responsorial Psalm for the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Ordinary Form, Cycle C
This is the responsorial Psalm for the Ordinary Form, 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C
For us, Christ is everything. We begin in each day in his presence. We adore the Lord, address him with the psalms of our ancestors and enter the sacred Liturgy, the source and summit in our life in Christ. As part of a community that prays the psalms morning and night, I am often reminded that these are the same psalms Christ prayed. He even prayed a psalm on the cross. The Psalms are the Word of God, and praying them we ask that we become the work of God. As part of the Body of Christ, we who are ‘in Christ’ join him in his prayer to the Father. This is a wondrous mystery and constant experience of being ‘in Christ.’
I have participated in communities of monks and lay people in from Europe to the west Coast of the United States. In all those cases, it is the chanting of the psalms that is transformative for the people involved. It changes us and hopefully conforms us to the likeness of the Lord.
The psalms are important for the celebration of the Liturgy. They are important for entrance chants, Graduals and responsorial psalms, and offertory and communion chants. They are an important part of praying the Mass. Particular liturgies focus on one specific psalm to give a particular focus to the prayer of that Mass. For example, On the First Sunday of Lent, Psalm 90(91) is the text of the Introit, the Gradual and Tract, the Offertory and the Communion. In the Ordinary form it is the Entrance and Communion antiphons as well as the Responsorial Psalm.
The psalms are ancient hymns, laments, ceremonial chants and thanksgiving songs. They contain every emotion known. They are first of all prayer and they teach us to pray. They are supposed to be sung. The music as a vehicle to convey the text, needs to be simple so as not to overtake or obscure the text. The music places the text on our lips and lift our hearts to our generous and merciful God. The ancient modes that have carried the psalms for centuries is the most appropriate. A catholic cantor should be able to chant a psalm on a moment’s notice. That young catholic musicians are ignorant of these modes is a sadness.
These psalms for have been prepared for the Responsorial Psalm for Sundays. They may be useful for any time that prayer is needed.
Rev. Jeffrey Keyes, is a Catholic Priest in the Diocese of Santa Rosa in California. Ordained to the priesthood in 1991, he has served as Pastor of St. Barnabas parish in Alameda 1994-2001, Director of Seminary Formation, 2001-2004, and as Pastor at St. Edward 2004-2015. A musician and composer, he has served the Diocese of Oakland in a number of capacities including member of the Liturgical Commission and chair of the Music commission. Fr. Keyes was Choir Director at St. Francis de Sales Cathedral 1989 to 1991. In 2001-2004 he conducted the Gregorian Schola at the University of Chicago. Since 2016 he is the Chaplain for the Marian Sisters of Santa Rosa, Director of the Chant Schola of the Cathedral of St. Eugene in Santa Rosa.