Use: Good Friday
Required Resources: SATB choir, cantor
Optional Resources: Congregation
Language: English, Greek New 2010 Translation
The Roman Missal encourages the singing of The Reproaches during the Adoration of the Holy Cross on Good Friday.
This is a traditional text based on Old Testament prophetic passages (see Micah 6:3-4) and the Trisagion (Hagios o Theos).
Also called Improperia, it begins, "My people, what have I done to you..."
In this text the crucified Christ recalls God's mighty acts for the salvation of mankind and reproaches man for his unfaithfulness.
In this updated setting by James Morrison, a cantor sings the twelve verses (e.g. "Because I led you out of the land of Egypt, you have prepared a Cross for your Savior."), using a recurring tone.
Two Antiphons are scored for SATB choir:
My people, my people, what have I done to you?
Or how have I grieved you?
Hagios o Theos, Holy is God,
Hagios Ischyros, Holy and Mighty,
Hagios Athanatos, eleison himas.
Holy and Immortal One, have mercy on us.
The congregation may join in singing the soprano line for Antiphon 1.
Antiphon 2 is reserved for the choir, and is sung only three times.
In traditional manner, this setting is sung a cappella, respecting an ancient practice of using no accompaniment whatsoever on Good Friday.
The musical tone for the verses is simple and effective.
The harmonic writing for choir is beautiful, noble and decidely "proper."
You will surely be pleased with Mr. Morrison's liturgical setting.