The Sacred Heart is one of the few parishes to retain the Latin mass (using the New Order), and each Sunday the choir sings settings of the mass in Latin, along with the plainsong propers for the day (introit, gradual, alleluia). The creed and Pater Noster are sung to the familiar plainsong settings and the appropriate Marian antiphon is also sung each week. A motet is usually sung at the offertory and communion. In addition, the prayer for the Queen (Domine Salvam Fac) is sung at the end of mass each week.
There is such a rich heritage of Catholic music which we have a duty to preserve and treasure. Most of the greatest composers wrote for the church, and we aim to reflect this in our music lists. We are fortunate to possess a very fine organ, just restored, and the voluntaries at the end are an integral part of the mass.
On the last Sunday of each month, the liturgy is in English and this gives us the opportunity to include music from other traditions, mainly the extensive repertoire of Anglican church music, so Howells, Stanford, Bairstow, Britten are also in the repertoire as well as Palestrina, Victoria, Mozart and Haydn.
The choir is a voluntary, mixed choir of over twenty, but we are always keen to welcome new members, particularly tenors and basses. Please contact Robert Rathbone, the director of music if you would like to join. Choir practices are Wednesday evenings from 7.30-9.30 and Sunday before Mass at 9.45.