Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) – Gregorian Chant, also because of the fact that the cantors are not the centre of attention, is in keeping with the spirit of the Roman Liturgy, as Icons are for Byzantine Liturgy.
…Gregorian Chant which achieves harmony of body and soul was composed by contemplatives rather than great artists; so it inspired Palestrina and can inspire religious music of the future. Certainly Gregorian Chant, John Paul II wrote in the Breve Iubilari feliciter dated 1980, remains the unifying musical bond for Catholics helping them to experience, as Pope Benedict XVI said, the unity of the Church.
The Liturgical Celebration must have a homogenous phonic balance and therefore in chant and prayer a soft voice is best, it is consonant to the attitude of humility and discretion which we should have before God. Hence the need to avoid tones which are «shouted» and to use instead quieter tones proper to prayer in ‘secret’ (cfr. Mt 6,5). In this sense Benedictine Liturgical prayer can be considered a model for our inspiration. Therefore, beginning with the priest who leads the people of God, it would be good, especially on solemnities, to return to the use of Gregorian Chant for the Ordinary, by now familiar in the local language, and perhaps even parts of the Proper of Mass.
From an interesting article on Gregorian Chant, silence and … the Altar Bell