Music For Lent – Updated for 2020

by Christine Sine

Music is such a wonderful aid to meditation and reflection that I realize the need to help all of us find appropriate music to assist us in this. Obviously, there are hundreds if not thousands of songs and musical pieces out there that would be appropriate so I have tried to post a sampling from different traditions. Also, I must confess that I am not a music expert by any sense of the imagination. I rely on Paul Neeley who posts extensively on music resources for all seasons of the church year. Check out his link to Lenten, Holy Week and Easter resources.

Please add your suggestions in the comment section too. What is your favorite music for Lent? for Easter?

Here are some of the best resources (some outside the box) that I have found in the music area for Lent and Easter. Again I have tried to draw from a variety of traditions.

GIA Publications has a very rich array of music for the season.

Discipleship Ministries has good music resources for Lent, mainly available as free downloads.

Liturgical Folk released this Lent album in 2019.

Engage Worship offers many worship ideas for Lent.

Or this its of Lenten Anthems from JW Pepper.

Or Top 40 worship songs for Lent from Praise Charts.

Or from CJM Music – Music and Liturgy for Lent

Gungor’s song “Beautiful Things” is a powerful song of brokenness and transformation.

A beautiful Celtic tune “A Lenten Journey”

And a beautiful reflective song from one of my favourite musicians Jeff Johnson

Handel’s “Messiah” is now traditionally known as a Christmas piece but was originally written for Easter.

“Te Deum” – 5th Century  is attributed to two Fathers and Doctors of the Church, St. Ambrose and St. Augustine and is one the most majestic chants in the Liturgy of the Church.

These Gregorian chants from Assisi are beautiful to listen to as a focus for reflection.

“The St. Matthew Passion”, is a sacred oratorio from the Passions written by Johann Sebastian Bach in 1727 for solo voices, double choir and double orchestra, with libretto by Picander. It sets chapters 26 and 27 of the Gospel of Matthew (in the German translation of Martin Luther) to music, with interspersed chorales and arias. It is widely regarded as one of the masterpieces of classical sacred music. If you choose to listen to this, make sure you have plenty of time – it is over 2 hours long.

“All Glory Laud and Honour” is the traditional hymn to sing on Palm Sunday.

“The Power of the Cross” – A beautiful reflective hymn for Good Friday.

And another classic – When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

The Old Rugged Cross – another old favourite 

 Check Out Other Godspace Resources:

A Series on Lent and Creativity:

Get Creative and Play Games for Lent;

Five Ways to Foster Creativity in Kids During Lent

Seven Tips for Creating Sacred Space For Lent

Let’s Get Creative with Lent

Let’s Get Creative – Doodle Your Way Through the Lenten Calendar

Godspace Resources:

Lord Lead Us To Repentance – A Lenten meditation video produced in 2012

Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?  This meditation is designed for Good Friday and does not have music.

An Invitation to Journey –  A short Lenten meditation video from 2008

Is This the Fast?  – A Lenten meditation produced in 2008

All our Lenten and Easter resource lists, including FREE downloads can be found here.

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