Planning the music for Lenten services can be a monumental task. Not only are there Sunday services but midweek and Holy Week services too. Open up your options with digital music that you can preview, download, and print instantly. These five hand-picked selections are perfect for the Lenten season and Holy Week to share with your church.
“In the Shattered Bliss of Eden” | SATB, Organ, Brass Quintet, opt. Timpani and Congregation
Opening with a beautiful brass fanfare, this setting by Kevin Hildebrand is a grand SATB piece to add to your collection. It has a medium difficulty for singers, and will help your congregation feel the wonder and awe of God’s plan of salvation for all through Christ. The hymn tune is RUSTINGTON, and your choir and instrumentalists will love working on this piece together to share as an offertory or postlude.
“For God So Loved the World” | SAB
Bring a well-loved classic hymn to your choral library with this setting for SAB. Composed by Hugo Distler, this hymn allows your choir to sing the words of John 3:16 and remind your congregation that “He gave His only-begotten Son that whoever in Him believeth, nevermore shall perish but have eternal life given.” The moving eight-note melody brings a fun and engaging twist for listeners to enjoy.
“Go to Dark Gethsemane” | Organ
Composed by seasoned musician Jeffrey Blersch, this organ setting is a staple for Lenten services. Both seasoned organists and newer organists looking for a challenge will love this medium-difficulty piece for the hymn tune GETHSEMANE. This particular setting is meant to be used as an introduction to Lutheran Service Book hymn 436 and as an accompaniment for congregational singing. In either capacity, this familiar tune will surely bring a somber and reflective tone to your services, helping your congregation bring their sins to God as they revisit His Son’s preparations for His ultimate sacrifice on the cross.
“In the Cross of Christ I Glory” | Organ
Timeless and beautiful, this setting by Wilbur Held is perfect for any of your Lenten services. Using the hymn tune RATHBUN, this easy organ piece makes a great prelude to Lutheran Service Book hymn 427. For newer organists or those who don’t have a lot of time to learn a new setting, this is the perfect setting to try.
“Were You There” | 2–3 Octave Handbells
This piece, by composer Sondra Tucker, is perfect for Lent and Holy Week. Based on Lutheran Service Book 456 and the hymn tune WERE YOU THERE, this handbell setting will ring out the somber yet stunning tune for all to hear. As your congregation sings or hums along to this familiar hymn, they’ll see the sacrifice Christ made for the forgiveness of their sins and reflect inwardly on both the beauty and wonder of Lent.
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