Den nya katolska gudstjänstboken


  • Anders Ekenberg CTR


The Roman Catholic Church in Sweden will release a new hymnal, Cecilia, hopefully on the first o f Advent 2007. 

The Roman Catholic church in Sweden will release a new edition of its hymnal, Cecilia, hopefully on the first Sunday of Advent 2007.

In the new Cecilia common ecumenical songs are no: contained in a separate part of the book, as it was in the preceding edition of the hymnal, but more than half of the ’ecumenical’ section of the previous edition has been retained. The Roman Catholic church has a particular need for a worship service book with material for different liturgical events during the church year. Hymn singing does not occur as frequently as in the reformed traditions; on the other hand the people is expected to be more active in other types of song in the liturgy. A hymnal with 325 ecumenically chosen hymns would be to extensive, and a large part of these hymns would be seldom sung, if ever.

The active members of the Catholic church in Sweden come from many different parts of the world. This pluralism has to be mirrored in the hymnal. There has also been a great need for new texts and new music for worship. Consequently, an important part of the new hymnal consists of quite new songs.

The ideal upheld by other denominations in Sweden that every single hymn text should have its own melody is considered impossible and unpractical when it comes to Catholic liturgy. The melodies are therefore re-used to different texts to a greater extent than was the case in the previous edition. Great efforts have been made in order to ensure that the melodies are not unnecessarily difficult. Furthermore, the new edition of the hymnal contains - as it is required by Catholic worship - a large number of repetitive songs and songs with refrains.