The door is open, just come on in

Archbishop Charles Chaput has decided to forgo the customary knock on the cathedral door when he is installed in Philadelphia next month — and other details of the ceremony are also coming to light:

There will be no knocking on the door when Archbishop Charles J. Chaput arrives to the Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul in Philadelphia on the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The custom of knocking on the cathedral door, which has been done by some U.S. bishops when they were received at a new diocese, is not a practice that the church prescribes for such a ceremony.

Archbishop Chaput has decided to give his first homily as archbishop of Philadelphia from the cathedra rather than from the ambo, according to Father [Denis] Gill, director of worship for the archdiocese.

In giving media the rundown on the ceremony yesterday, the priest also mentioned that Archbishop Chaput had two special song requests for the installation service: “Gift of Finest Wheat” and “O God Beyond All Praising.” Both hymns are being included in the Mass.

Check CNS for more.

Meantime, to get us in the mood, everybody sing!

Anglophiles, of course, know this hymn better as “I Vow to Thee, My Country,” which was a favorite of Princess Diana’s, and performed at her funeral, below.  (I remember catching an EWTN mass on President’s Day a few years back and being surprised to hear this rendition of the hymn performed then.  How ecumenical of them!)

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12 responses to “The door is open, just come on in”

  1. I would not be surprised if “Gift of Finest Wheat” was chosen because it was composed for the 41st Eucharistic Congress held in Philadelphia in 1976 and the composer, Robert Edward Kreutz was a choir director in a parish near Denver, CO. That makes a nice Philadelphia-Denver connection.

    (Dorothy Day and Princess Grace of Monaco, a native Philadelphian, gave talks at the Congress.)

  2. “O God Beyond All Praising” and “I Vow to Thee, My Country” are probably the two best known hymns set to the hymn tune Thaxted, which was written by Gustav Holst based on the main “Jupiter” theme from The Planets.

    (It’s one of my favorite tunes, either in its original context or as a hymn tune)

  3. That’s a beautiful hymn, I’ll have to see if I can find the accompaniment in OCP. I wonder if we’ll be getting more hymns with a bit of a British sound now that we have the Anglican Ordinariate. Would be ok with me; there are a lot of good ones in that tradition.

  4. A little more than 10 years ago, my wife and I had “Thaxted” (the hymn tune for “Oh God Beyond All Praising”) played as the processional for our wedding. Then, when everyone was in place, everyone sang it as the opening hymn. The text fits well for a wedding.

  5. Sean:
    Thanks for sharing. My son is going to be married next spring and, since he and his fiancée have said that THEY WELCOME MY INPUT (?), I am going to email your comment to them.

  6. What if a bishop knocks and they refuse to open the door and barricade it with chairs and pews? It must have happened at least once in the Reformation!

  7. Kenneth:

    Had the new Archbishop knocked, there would probably some Catholics in Philadelphia who would have sung that oldie but goodie by Little Richard:

    “Keep a knockin’ but you can’t come in.”

  8. I was told once (perhaps a choir director urban legend?) that the BBC played this every night as their sign-off during the Blitz. So Londoners huddled in shelters would have heard

    and whether our tomorrow be fill’d with good or ill,
    we’ll triumph through our sorrows and rise to bless you still:
    to marvel at your beauty and glory in your ways,
    and make a joyful duty our sacrifice of praise.

    last thing each night.

  9. Cathyf…

    I suspect that’s more an urban legend that truth. The Wikipedia entry (always a reliable source, ha!) goes into some detail about the tune’s history, but doesn’t mention that.

    At any rate, if the Brits DID hear it, they likely would have heard “I Vow to Thee My Country,” with a very different set of lyrics that reflect national affection and pride:

    I vow to thee, my country, all earthly things above,
    Entire and whole and perfect, the service of my love;
    The love that asks no question, the love that stands the test,
    That lays upon the altar the dearest and the best;
    The love that never falters, the love that pays the price,
    The love that makes undaunted the final sacrifice.

    I heard my country calling, away across the sea,
    Across the waste of waters she calls and calls to me.
    Her sword is girded at her side, her helmet on her head,
    And round her feet are lying the dying and the dead.
    I hear the noise of battle, the thunder of her guns,
    I haste to thee my mother, a son among thy sons.

    And there’s another country, I’ve heard of long ago,
    Most dear to them that love her, most great to them that know;
    We may not count her armies, we may not see her King;
    Her fortress is a faithful heart, her pride is suffering;
    And soul by soul and silently her shining bounds increase,
    And her ways are ways of gentleness, and all her paths are peace.

    Dcn. G.

  10. Also known as “Three Days” — we just sang it last Sunday. Which turns it into a song of Resurrection.
    My favorite is the final verse:

    “Three days our world was broken and in an instant healed, God’s covenenat of mercy in mystery revealed.
    “Two thousand years are one day in God’s eternal sight, and yesterday’s sorrows are this day’s delight.
    “Though still Christ’s body suffers, pierced daily by the sword, yet death has no dominion; the risen Christ is Lord!”

    At any rate, can’t every go wrong with Holst!

  11. You have to love it when liberals comment on a new bishop coming in who actually believes in and teaches the Catholic faith in its fullness. Bishops just like Chaput are what is needed across the USA to begin to clean up the mess left behind by open dissent and even outright lies about Church teaching. Chaput leaves behind him in Denver one of the best organizations in the country turning out priests on fire for Church teaching and religious who will help in teaching this to our children. The Cincinnati dioceses under Archbishop Schnurr has brought an educator from Denver dioceses to bring consistency to the teaching across the dioceses as to what the Catholic Church actually teaches. We can only hope that he does much of the same thing with growth of our seminaries producing those who believe in actual Church teaching.

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