Home | Works of Augustine | His Impact | Singing ID 2105


St Augustine : Choir members Augustinian parish, Nagasaki
Choir members
Augustinian parish, Nagasaki

These are brief notes gathered from different sources, and not proposed as being a comprehensive coverage of this topic.
By all reports, the speaking voice of Augustine was less than ideal, and as a consequence presumably he was not blessed with the talent of being a good singer.
He had a quiet voice, to which he himself made many references in his sermons.
This is certainly not to suggest, however, that he did not see the value of human singing as a way of praising God.
Even though in fact the phrase cannot be found in his writings, Augustine is often credited for the statement, "Qui cantat, bis orat" ("A person who sings prays twice"), i.e., firstly with the lyrical words used and secondly with the talent of singing that is brought into the act of praising of God.
As the writings of Augustine became well-known and generaly much respected, his vision of church music had a definite impact on the church in subsequent ages.
He promoted the singing of praises to God.
He stressed the importance of singing not just with the mouth, but also with the heart and deeds.
He described the praise in singing as a foretaste of the abundant joy of our prospective life in the "new heaven and new earth."
He was convinced of the generally-held church tradition that singing praises to the holy name of God was indispensable for personal faith and the upbuilding of the congregation (1 Corinthians 3: 16).
Singing of songs is inseparably connected to people who know that they received new life in Jesus Christ.

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