Executives of the National Catholic Liturgical Music Council of Nigeria (NACALIMCON), have been urged to compose guidelines on the use of music at liturgical celebrations for Catholic choirs in Nigeria.
“Compose guidelines on the use of music at liturgical celebrations. A guideline that will encompass what is fitting and what is not fitting in relation to the employment of liturgical music, the comportment of choristers, the use of instruments, the importation of secular melodies into the liturgy, etc.”
The Director of Pastoral Affairs Department of the Catholic Secretariat Secretariat of Nigeria (CSN), Rev. Fr. Michael Banjo gave the urge while addressing the Executive members of NACALIMCON, during the group’s courtesy visit to CSN on Friday, February 9, 2024.
Emphasising on the importance of sacred music in the Church’s liturgy, the Church’s canonist explained that when music is fittingly employed in the liturgy, worship is greatly enhanced and the very purpose of the liturgy is realised. He appreciated the body specially, for all they do to promote liturgical music in Nigeria.
The Episcopal secretary on Synod and Pilgrimages, Rev Fr. Nicholas Djebah, appealed to the Church’s music vanguards to translate the hymn for the 2025 Jubilee Year into various languages so that people can participate actively. He called on them to enforce their policies and reinvigorate that sense of liturgical decorum on choristers during worship.
The National Deputy Chaplain of NACALIMCON, Rev. Fr. George Shenge, noted that there is a serious need for choristers to be guided properly, because they are breaking away from the norms and values of the Catholic music, and observed that the sensitization should begin with the choir leaders who will in turn pass it on to others.
On her part, the National Adviser of NACALIMCON, Rev. Sr. Trinitas Keke, DDL, expressed satisfaction with the effort of the pastoral affairs department and their interest in the progress of liturgical music. She decried the level at which young choristers have been influenced by the worldly trend in music, and also appealed for sensitization for even some priests who are carried away by pentecostalism, so that they can pass it on to their choirs. She expressed the council’s willingness to assist the CSN with the seminar and sensitization exercise if called upon.
In his vote of thanks, the Episcopal Secretary for the Laity, Mr. Joseph Ishu, disclosed that the meeting has exposed to all, the duties of CSN to the chuch. He thanked the council for their fraternity, and pledged the Secretariat’s support to them in all their undertakings. He also advised that concerning their proposed guidelines, they should put all in place to get the CSN stamp on it, so that it will not be taken for granted.