Mass Settings - Resources

Resources for Parishes & Schools


In the preparations for the new translation of the Roman Missal it was recognised that singing would be one of the best ways to learn the new texts. The bishops therefore allowed settings of the new translation to be sung from Easter 2011 when the Order of Mass was introduced in September 2011.

It is approaching 3 years since this permission was given and the majority of parishes and schools have found settings of the parts of the Mass which suit their local situation and resources. Indeed there have been a large number of new settings written and older settings revised during this time.

The Bishops’ Conference has decided that from Pentecost Sunday, 8 June 2014 only settings of the Ordinary of the Mass using the new translation are permitted to be sung at Mass. From this date settings using the previous translation or paraphrased texts may no longer be used in parishes, schools and communities.

This document is to help those schools and parishes which have not yet begun to sing the new translation.

Chants from the Roman Missal

A starting point for many have been the chants which are found in the altar Missal. These simple chants offer a basic setting which can be used on any occasion. They are recommended for all parishes as they provide a common repertoire of music which can be sung by all without the need for accompaniment.

There are resources available to assist with the learning of the music and to provide accompaniment if required.

Diocesan recommendations

Many dioceses recommended the Missal Chants to parishes and schools as a primary setting when the Missal was being introduced. Some dioceses also recommended other settings to encourage musicians.  For example, Westminster diocese recommended James MacMillan’s St Anne’s Mass as a common setting for when communities come together. Other dioceses include Birmingham and Hallam.

School & Parish

Where there is a sharing of music between parish and school(s) this can be of benefit to both. This will obviously be true in regard to Mass settings. It may be that one or other community has skilled musicians who can help the other choose and learn a common setting.

People have been concerned about the lack of ‘child-friendly’ versions. It is worth remembering that children are adept at learning, and enjoy a wide range of musical styles as long as they are well taught.

Choosing wisely

It is worth remembering that the new translation did not change the texts in the Missal for the Kyrie or Lord, have mercy, or for the Lamb of God — though it should be noted that paraphrases are no longer permitted. 

The significant changes in the text were in the Gloria and in the Eucharistic Acclamations: Sanctus or Holy, Holy and Memorial Acclamations. The list of settings below therefore concentrates on these parts of the Mass.

The different parts of the Mass can be gathered together in a single Mass setting or a composer may have chosen just to set part of the Mass, such as the Gloria. Though it can be convenient to use a whole Mass setting there is no obligation to use all of it — it is often the case that some parts are more successful than others.

When introducing a new Mass setting it is important to use it over a number of weeks so that both musicians and congregation can become familiar with it. For some communities it may be enough, initially, just to aim to have 2 settings — perhaps one as a common setting, such as the Missal chants, and another for festive occasions such as Christmas and Easter.


In addition to the settings listed below there have been a number of collections and other sources of information.

Published Collections of Masses

  • Laudate Supplement (Decani Music), 
    intended to update the Mass settings in the hymnal. This has since been incorporated in the 2nd edition of Laudate.
  • Celebration Hymnal Mass Settings Supplement (McCrimmons), 
    a selection of settings for a variety of resources.
  • Glory to God (Decani Music), 
    prepared by the Archdiocese of Birmingham Music Committee it contains a number of full settings and individual movements. 
  • Sing the Mass (Veritas) 
    An anthology of music for the Irish Church, it includes the Lourdes setting.

Other Resources

Diocesan Liturgy Commissions or Music Committees may also be able to advise and help parishes choose and learn new settings.

Some Suggestions

There have been a large number of setting written for range of resources and abilities. In addition to the settings listed below the websites and other resources listed may be consulted. As noted above for many dioceses and parishes the chants given in the Roman Missal have provided a basic setting. 

The list below is not exhaustive but highlights a number of setting which parishes and schools, that have not yet started singing the new translations, will find worth exploring.


The Gloria is sung on Sundays during Christmas, Easter and Ordinary Time. It is not sung on Sundays in Advent or Lent. It is not usually sung on weekdays apart from on Solemnities and Feasts (e.g. All Saints).

Musical settings can either be sung straight through or responsorially with a refrain.

Mass of Joy and Peace — Tony Alonso 
A popular setting with a refrain written for congregation, cantor, guitar and keyboard.

Mass of St Luke —Teresa Brown
A responsorial setting for congregation, cantor, guitar and keyboard.
CHS, Devine

At the Table of the Lord: Psallite Mass — Collegeville Composers Group
A simple chanted setting which can easily sung by all.
CHS, LitPr

Mass of Blessed John Paul — Edwin Fawcett
Used for the tour of St John Bosco’s relics in this country.

A Parish Mass — Peter Jones
A straightforward, unison setting for congregation and keyboard.
GtG, LdS, Decani

Mass of St Benedict — Margaret Rizza
A responsorial setting with parts for choir, keyboard and instruments

Pershore Mass — Alan Smith
A responsorial setting with choir parts.
GtG, LdS, Decani

Glory to God — Anne Ward
A melodic responsorial setting for congregation, cantor, guitar and keyboard.

Eucharistic Acclamations

The Eucharistic Acclamations are the Sanctus or Holy, Holy, Memorial Acclamations and Amen. They form part of the people’s response to the Eucharistic Prayer. Composers are asked to provide a complete set of acclamations to match the unity of the prayer itself. In many dioceses priests have been encouraged to sing their parts of the Mass such as the Invitation to the Memorial Acclamations and the Doxology.

Spring Sanctus — Martin Barry
Can be used with guitars or with choir and organ.
GtG, CHS, Decani

Warrington Acclamations — Nick Baty
A lively setting for congregation, guitar and keyboard.
GtG, Concept

Sussex Mass — Stephen Dean
Based on a folk song melody for congregation and keyboard.
GtG, Decani

Mass of Creation — Marty Haugen
A revised setting for use with with choir, guitar, keyboard and instruments.

Freedom Liturgy — C J Olding
A bright setting for use with congregation. guitar and keyboard.

Mass of Christ our Saviour — Dan Schutte
A melodic setting for use with congregation. guitar and keyboard.
Ld2, OCP

Mass of St Bernadette — Mike Stanley
A simple setting for use with congregation. guitar and keyboard.

In Pace Acclamations — Christopher Walker
Responsorial, written for use at Funerals but could be used whenever a simple setting is required.
GtG, Decani


CHS Celebration Hymnal for Everyone Mass Settings Supplement (settings also found in latest edition of Celebration Hymnal for Everyone) [http://www.mccrimmons.com]

CJM CJM Music [http://www.cjmmusic.com]

Concept Concept Music [http://www.conceptmusiconline.com]

Decani Decani Music [http://www.decanimusic.co.uk]  (settings are available as single sheet nmusic)

Devine Devine Music [http://www.devinemusic.org.uk]

EF Edwin Fawcett [http://www.edwinfawcett.com/edwinfawcett/order.html]

GIA GIA Publications [http://www.giamusic.com/sacred_music/]

GtG Glory to God, collection published by Decani Music

LdS Laudate Supplement published by Decani (settings are also available Laudate Hymnbook, 2nd edition (Ld2))

LitPr Liturgical Press [http://www.litpress.org]

OCP Oregon Catholic Press [http://www.ocp.org]

RSCM Royal School of Church Music [http://www.rscmshop.com]

Veritas Veritas [http://www.veritasbooksonline.com]

Wheat Wheatsheaf Music [http://www.wheatsheafmusic.co.uk]