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. He recommends a few of these in particular: “A Song of Penitence” by Ryan Flanigan and “Rend Your Hearts” by The McMakens. 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.
- Dust/Mercy by Hymns for the Architect (song for Ash Wednesday)
- Lent to Maundy Thursday by Page CXVI
- Good Friday to Easter by Page CXVI
- Engage Worship offers many worship ideas for Lent.
- Lenten Anthems from JW Pepper.
- Top 40 worship songs for Lent from Praise Charts.
- From CJM Music – Music and Liturgy for Lent
- Liturgy Tools offers free-use hymns and songs for the Lenten season
- Contemplative Music for Lent by Christine Sine
- 40 Songs for 40 Days: A Lenten Playlist
- Lenten Playlist by Erica Bye
- Drawn to You: A Lenten Playlist by Audrey Assad
Gungor’s song “Beautiful Things” is a powerful song of brokenness and transformation.
A beautiful Celtic tune called “A Lenten Journey”.
Parts 1 and 2 of “A Celtic Lenten Journey” – Harp, Voice, and Violin
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.
“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 about 3 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:
Please check out our complete list of Godspace resources for Lent through Holy Week including our free downloads.
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.
Is This the Fast? – A Lenten meditation produced in 2008