Updated regarding 501(c)(3) status, music, and permissions

Dane on May 27th, 2016 | 76 comments

Dear Community,

A week ago we began the time, money, and resource intensive process to transfer the Divine Office Ministry into a Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We (me and legal experts) have completed our filing paperwork and it will be signed this weekend and submitted early next week. Once submitted, the process is expected to take a few months leading to our expected approval of 501(c)(3) status. I expect all contributions made this year will be tax deductible, but that is only my uneducated opinion.

In the past week I had a good discussion with the permissions office of GIA where we discussed licensing 42 hymns. GIA has one of the widest selections of hymns, as well as their recordings, of any hymn publisher. Royalties will be costly, but manageable. There are additional benefits to working with GIA for they manage permissions within the USA for the Grail psalms (current and upcoming translations).

While we look towards a possibility of licensing from GIA, we strongly desire to buildup our own catalogue of hymns. This is not only to save on royalty costs, but to bring back translations from the original Latin. Doing so would elevate the Divine Office. Furthermore, having our own catalogue of hymns could be used to financially support this ministry as it also reduces our cost for royalties so it becomes a win in quality and cost.

If you haven’t visited our Hymns Needed link from the right side of our website then you may find it interesting. It is evolving as members of our community research and discover wonderful resources.

Many of the hymns you will be hearing for the next few weeks are substitutes until we can bring in what we have been working on or that have come from our community. Please be patient, but do let us know your feelings.

Remember, we must close our doors to new members very soon. We have been graciously allowed to remain open to new members, but we are only remaining open now because we found that a sizable group of you were able to access without logging in. This would have been very unfortunate if we had closed off the site to only registered folks without you knowing you hadn’t registered. So, we are very close. Please make sure you have registered and successfully logged in. Don’t worry that you lose a password because you will always be able to recover your password or get our help to regain your access. Send those requests to [email protected]

I also wish to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have vision impairments or disabilities for getting in touch with us. Please continue to do so by sending us an email at [email protected] When you contact us let us know how we can serve your needs better. We know that there is no other way for many of you to pray the Liturgy of the Hours and so you become the most important souls we serve.

Lastly and most importantly, we are very grateful for being called to serve a community as wonderful as all of you. We are grateful that even through my naivety and missteps that threatened this ministry that those controlling vital permissions have granted us time to bring our house into order. We ask all of you to continue to pray that we receive the guidance and support needed to make this work endure and that you pray for intercession that those who hold the keys to our future will grant us all needed permissions and support this great work for God, our Divinium Officum.

In Christ,
Dane Falkner
Divine Office producer and servant to God

The English translation of The Liturgy of the Hours (Four Volumes) ©1974, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation. All rights reserved. Used with permission by Surgeworks, Inc for the Divine Office Catholic Ministry. DivineOffice.org website, podcast, apps and all related media is © 2006-2019 Surgeworks, Inc. All rights reserved.

76 thoughts on “Updated regarding 501(c)(3) status, music, and permissions

  1. Hi, I noticed that since yesterday Mon 11th July, the Morning Prayer page does not show any link to an audio file. Today is the same. I was wondering if anyone else experienced this problem, as it may only be at my end perhaps? I find the audio really handy as I work from home, and can listen to the prayers while I work. Thank you for your help.

  2. Greetings to you! I was wondering if I needed to correspond to you on which email address do I correspond? In the last four days I was not able to log onto the internet to say the Divine Office in the morning, noon, evening and night so I tried to top my phone with currency and say it thru my phone but it did not work. Earlier I did use the mobile to say the Divine Office. I logged in with my email address and my password but it did not accept my password. Could someone from the admin office please help me. I would not want to experience this as I feel really sad that I cannot say the Office of readings . My email address is with you could some one please write to me. Hope to hear from you soon. God bless the Divine Office Ministry and team.

  3. Thank you for this ministry. Please do not be discouraged by the current difficulties as I and all this community value Divine Office so much, and these Offices help us so much. Praying with the support of a community is so different from praying on your own.
    I have made a contribution and will continue to support and rely on Divine Office as will so many of us.
    Thank you so much for your faithfulness and steadfastness in bringing the Offices to us.

  4. Dane, I have a friend, Lenny Smith, who is the author of “Our God Reigns” and several other albums of Christian music. He is interested in sharing his music with divine office for the exposure of his music. His music is copyrighted so there may be a fee. His cds are at:www,greatcomfortrecords.com

  5. Just wanted to let you know that my vision is impaired and I am so grateful to be able that DivineOffice.org is programmed so that I can enlarge the screen without losing the formatting.

    Also, you might find hymns, particularly translations, through Christopher Mueller at http://www.benesonarium.com/. He is also an excellent resource. (Feel free to let him know that Drusilla Barron referred you.)

    You all are in my prayers as you continue to develop this ministry.

  6. >> Remember, we must close our doors to new members very soon.

    If you start turning new members away, won’t you also be turning away the monies and donations you would get from these individuals? It would seem counter-productive…

    • Hello

      I did not read anything about turning away new members? I read that the site will only bee available to registered members and registration is free (anyone can register).
      Please let me know if I missed something.
      Thank you and God bless

      • Hello Michael, we are not turning people away. We don’t advertise openly our service, we have removed the app from the market but there are still those who use our app, and by that I mean they are members of this community, and want to get access to the website. We will not say no to them. If you have additional questions, write to me at [email protected]


  7. Greetings from the community of Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans. You mentioned bringing back translations of the original Latin – the Abbey of St. Caecilia (UK) has beautiful translations of the original Latin hymns of the current breviary (which are not the hymns that are in the current American English translation) which our seminary uses with permissions at chanted community prayers on Sundays and other special occasions. Same beautiful melodies as the Latin hymns too. In other words, the music ministry of our seminary agrees that using the original hymns is good and appropriate (although of course the hymns in the American breviary are good too). We would be happy to send you recordings of the hymns as our schola sings them but we would need to ask the permission of the prioress of the Abbey of St. Caecilia first, and then also we wouldn’t be able to record until the Fall semester begins. But I thought I’d reach out to let you know this is a possibility in the near future. No promises at this point.

    • Dear Matthew,

      This could be a wonderful solution. However, we will have moved well forward in our progress on hymns so lets see where we are a month before school begins. Would you mind checking back?

  8. Thank you so much for providing such a wonderful resource as divineoffice.org. The Liturgy of the Hours really enhances my prayer experience. I happen to live in a bilingual city, El Paso and noticed that the Spanish version of the Liturgy used here is different than the English language version. I was taught that the Liturgy of the Hours is the public prayers of the Church is published first in Latin then translated into various languages. Can you shed light on the differences between the languages?
    Check out http://www.liturgiadelashoras.com.ar
    God bless you for all you do at divineoffice.org

  9. Praise Be Jesus!

    I am trying to problem solve why the audio stopped working on my Android phone. I uninstalled , reinstalled, and followed your suggestions from the help area. It reloaded everything nicely, except no audio.
    I am on your website now from my laptop and everything works beautifully, inc audio.
    Thank you for having Divine Office where there we are praying the hours with a community of others! God Bless your ministry!
    Dawn Teresa

  10. Thank you very much for what you do. I appreciate all the work you put in but I find it very distracting when music is being played in the background. It makes it harder to concentrate and is really not needed. When you look at all the Catholic apps in Google Play it is impossible to find any that are not playing music in the background. I have only noticed it in the night prayer so far so I read it instead of listening.

  11. J+MJ… Dane, thanks for this site of Divine Office- it’s very useful especially for the laity… but for me, i found it a little “confusing” since we never recite the psalmody and the prayers so POETICALLY. We chant, yes. But when we recite it, we pray it- i mean NOT poetically but prayerfully… please try to observe or join LOH in some convents/monasteries… this is only a suggestion… more power to this site. Thank you and GBUA+++

    • Dear rhodora,
      Yes, we know that our delivery is somewhat different then it would be in a monastic setting. If you know of any communities willing to let us record them then let us know by writing to us at [email protected]. It is one of our goals is to set the new translation to the most traditional and beautiful form possible. We will need a lot of support from a religious community to do it.

      • J+MJ… Dane, i go to public schools (my apostolate) in remote places of our province for catechetical classes. In the convent there were times i played the organ for our prayers/LOH. I have my keyboard with me and can still remember the psalm tones (traditional and contemporary tones). I could chant the psalms while playing the keyboard but my problem is i don’t know how to send it to you. I am not good in using the gadgets/net. i still have to seek help from others to teach me, then perhaps even i don’t have a good voice i could share whatever i could to this site… more power and God bless you always+++

  12. Good morning. I have completed all the questions for my profile but it continues to say 96% complete. Is there some other area I need to complete?

    Blessings to all who give of their time and efforts to make this wonderful website possible.

    Deacon Randy

    • Deacon Randy, you missed one, see under Tell us about your use of DivineOffice, question 8. On average, how often do you use a Divine Office mobile app to pray?

      • Monica – thank you for the help. I saw a check next to it so I assumed I answered it. Thanks!

  13. Thank you for getting the lyrics back on the music. My hearing is poor. Due to some trick of the brain I hear much better when I have the printed words in front of me.

    I know this is a very busy time; thanks again for all your efforts.

  14. Have you checked into one license.net? This is another music licensing company. They have multiple publishers including GIA. It is inexpensive I believe but it is an annual cost.

    • Hi Martha,
      OneLicense.net is a wonderful service. We had a license through them for a short period of time, but they felt we were not a church and so withdrew the license. I would ask people to contact them and plea our case, but we are already moving in a direction away from licensed content because we are finding we can use translations from that originates from the latin hymns of the early breviaries. It would be ironic if publishers charged so much that everyone went back to using the original hymns, which would better all around.

      • Dear Dane, one of our sisters is a composer and one of her CDs woman’s song of God has been very popular. I spoke to her once about putting her music on this site but neither of us were sure about how to do this. This particular cd is great for special celebrations for women. When I spoke to her a while a go she was happy to have her compositions used. If you are interested please let me know and I will chat with her again. Thanks for all your great work. Pia

      • Dear Pia,

        Yes, we are very interested. I am going to send you an email with an address to which you may send the CD and I will reimburse your costs.

  15. On this special day of Corpus Christi as we celebrate the most precious gift of Christ’s Body and Blood, I wish all of you God’s choicest blessings!

  16. I was wondering if it would be a good idea to check in with you tube uploaders to see if they have music that they could donate ( from Church recordings) since there are so many parishioners that record their music in their churches and upload them- Perhaps they would be kind enough to help by donating them?

  17. This is actually not a comment on this topic, but I do not see a way to initiate a new comment on another topic. I’m sorry, but this is the only way I see to comment. It is 9:34 where I am. I would like to pray the Evening prayer for today. But when I click on Evening Prayer, it takes me to tomorrow’s date over and over again. Even if I click “Yesterday’s prayer,” when I click on Evening Prayer, it still takes me to tomorrow’s prayer. What should I do? Why can I not pray today’s evening prayer while it is still today? Thanks.

    • Hi Mary, You may have tried this already but I’ll mention it just in case you didn’t: If you look to the right of the page you’ll see todays’ date, if you click on that you shoud be able to get to todays’ date and prayers. Hope this helps.
      God bless,

    • Click on PICK A DATE. It is on the right, opposite the sound button and just below PEOPLE NOW IN PRAYER. That should bring up a calendar from which you can choose.

      • Thanks for correcting me JosG. I didn’t check to make sure I had it right. I hope I didn’t confuse Mary. God bless, BobbieK

      • I appreciate the thanks, but I can’t take much credit. Note that I posted only a minute after you did.

  18. This is what I would expect of any group that works to build the Kingdom: “granted us time to bring our house into order.” They should be compensated for their efforts, as should Surgeworks but there are some who bear the title of Christian who would have handled this as the world does.
    Dane, I can’t imagine how difficult this has been for you and your company but in the messaging you are sending out, it seems that you are trusting in the Lord and handling this in a way that brings Him honor. God bless!

    • What gilmichelini has written speaks for me as well. Dane wrote a day or so ago about how adversity and challenges can be a the very thing that causes us to soar to new heights.

      The challenges Dane, his company Surgeworks and group of dedicated helpers are facing are significant. They need our support, not only financially, but perhaps even more than this, from the very heart of our spiritual selves. We can help by praying, yes, but also by offering constructive and helpful suggestions and encouraging feedback. I know many of you have already been doing so and the comments and helpful links to music in the public domain must be very uplifting to those working behind the scenes.

      I have personally been involved in setting up a truly very small ministry within my own parish community and struggled through some challenges, nonetheless. Satan sits smiling when he is able to sow the seeds of disharmony among believers. I recognise now that as a convert to Catholicism, I was naive at the time when I first proposed my small parish ministry to the parish community. I had not fully considered all of the needs of our community. At the time, in all honesty, the criticism was a significant challenge for me. Satan indeed smiled at my discouragement and I do confess I felt like giving up, but I did persevere with the help of a few kind and dedicated individuals.

      I suppose what I’m saying is it changed my way of looking at the efforts of others and has helped me to be appreciative of them, even when I see something that I might otherwise choose to approach slightly differently.

      Divineoffice.org serves so many believers right across the globe [and hence, I am blessed to be a participant in prayer]. We should be mindful that there may be some non-Catholic Christians who pray with us. Having come from a Protestant background myself and finally ‘found my treasured and beloved home’ as a Catholic Christian in 2011, I recognise that we are all on a unique journey to God and that God guides us each one of us, irrespective of which Christain community or denomination we call our spiritual home. I think the recent comments reflect a diversity of opinions and tastes in music, etc. We are all God’s children, irrespective of denomination. I truly hope that both Catholic and non-Catholic Christians will always feel welcome to join our praying community at divineoffice.org.

      As another contributor has already pointed out, Pope Francis has adopted an ecumenical outlook. He encourages us all, as followers of Christ, to be united as God’s people, to be compassionate and merciful toward others, perhaps more especially during this Year of Mercy.

      I can only imagine what Dane and his fellow workers are experiencing right now. It takes strong faith and conviction to persevere … and a lot of hard work. The faith of this small team of dedicated individuals, led by Dane, speaks volumes and is in itself a powerful witness of their faith and reliance on our beloved Lord for His help and on the prayerful intercessions of our Holy Mother.

      Thank you, Dane. and all who work behind the scenes at divineoffice.org. May God bless you and all who participate as members of this community of prayer.

      • I realised after I’d sent the message above that I should have clarified what I meant about being mindful of the possibility that non-Catholic Christians may visit divineoffice.org and wish to pray with us: I mean really in terms of what we contribute here … that we do not write anything that will discourage them from being part of our community of prayer. Most definitely, I am with those who have stated that the music should reflect our Catholic faith and reinforce the Mass Readings and content of LOTH for that Church Calenday Day and Hour of Prayer. We have a rich heritage of faith reflected in art, music and written works of the Doctors and Saints of the Church and it is a glorious treasure which I am still discovering. I simply love the meditative content of many of the old traditional Catholic hymns and chants, and surprisingly [at least to me] I know the words of many of the old hymns from school assemblies many years ago even though I was not schooled in a Catholic school. They are ‘old friends’ of mine.

      • This was beautiful! And there are many people on this site who have shown welcome and hospitality to those who don’t really know yet what it means to be Catholic. I don’t start RCIA till September so I’m kind of flying in the dark there for a few months yet, so you are what I know of Catholicism as I can do the prayers and worship from anywhere and any (or no) denomination. It is a sense of community that is lacking in my search for God. I really loved this quote, ” The faith of this small team of dedicated individuals, led by Dane, speaks volumes and is in itself a powerful witness of their faith and reliance on our beloved Lord for His help and on the prayerful intercessions of our Holy Mother.” You guys speak of that too. I am impressed that Dane always responds humbly and is open to correction from the church leaders. I am looking forward to whatever comes of all this.

      • I might also say that my boyfriend’s father was a Catholic and his father died very early. He is not a religion at all right now, like me, and we have had many discussions about Catholicism lately and in a positive seeking way. My pagan relatives who started out kind of confused about my search into Catholicism are now asking thoughtful questions. I don’t have any answers yet, I only know that I feel God deeply in the prayers and in the beautiful side of the history. I don’t know if what is happening on this site is what is considered a “vocation” or not, or if that is a word that is just for priests and monks etc… but every NON Catholic person who comes here is a doorway to a whole other world of people who don’t know what it means to be Catholic.

  19. Dane: A close friend of mine with ties to the CDW in Rome mentioned to me that the new English translation of the Liturgy of the Hours (The one that is in the works) is going to have proper hymns for each day of the week. This is something that was intended for the 1971 LOH but was left aside due to time constraints.

    While that is still five years away (according to the USCCB… I expect it to take longer), it may be beneficial to take this into consideration as you all continue to develop Divine Office.

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Liturgy of the Hours for May 21