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Creating a Worshipful and Penitential Mood during Lent

While the purpose of Lent isn’t to make worshipers feel sad, it’s important that they understand why the church takes time each year to remember the season. Worshipers ideally recognize that Lent is a time for focusing on their need for a Savior so they can appreciate Jesus’ sacrifice on Good Friday and His resurrection on Easter. Working aspects of Lent into members’ worship, home life, and personal reflection can help them turn to the cross each day during Lent.

Keeping Church Reverent

Our culture often promotes relaxed and casual attitudes toward church, urging that a church should be a place where you feel welcomed and comfortable and where you can enjoy your favorite songs while sipping your favorite latte. As appealing as this sounds, why should we strive to keep church and worship reverent? What does music have to do with it?

Last-Minute Music Selections for Lent and Easter

Lent starts in two weeks! If you’re scrambling to put music together, don’t worry—we have options for you. Browse the list below to find music that will work with your church’s musicians. Options are available for different types of choirs and for organ, handbell, and instrumentalists with and without choir.

The Praise of God in New Testament Songs and Hymns

This post is adapted from Praising God in Song by Carl Schalk.

The New Testament reflects in various ways both the content and vigor of the worship life of the early Christians. Among the excerpts from creeds, prayers, doxologies, and benedictions to be found in the New Testament are a variety of references to “hymns,” “psalms,” and “odes,” or “songs.” The very variety of terms suggests that no one “hymn form” was used exclusively.

Product of the Month: The Tree of Life

The new choral piece “The Tree of Life” depicts the fall of Adam and redemption through Christ, framing both in imagery drawn from the Garden of Eden. The musical arrangement matches the changing tone of the text through the four stanzas—from innocence through shame to redemption and triumph, finally ending with quiet assurance.

3 Project Management Tips to Streamline Lenten Worship Planning

As Lent approaches, you’re probably realizing that there’s always more to do around Lent than there are time and hands to complete the tasks! By making a few adjustments to the way your team works, your church office can reduce friction and confusion and increase efficiency to make Lenten worship planning easier.

How to Get Middle Schoolers to Participate in Choir Class

Students, especially middle schoolers on the cusp of adulthood, long to be treated with respect and dignity; however, as music teachers, it is often tempting to search for music we think might be popular with our students regardless of musical, or spiritual, value. As soon as we recognize that kids can tell when we are trying to cater to their childishness rather than help lead them toward a mature adulthood, we can see how valuable hymns are in teaching our middle schoolers.

Product of the Month: Lent Mosaics

Jacob Weber’s Lent Mosaics provides six new preludes on familiar hymns for the time of Lent. These settings ponder the Passion of our Lord through intricate and serious writing and will help set the tone for worship during this penitential season.

Emmanuel Has Come—Even to Tired Church Musicians

As Christmas approaches, everything around us tells us to be merry and happy—and we should be as we rejoice at the remembrance of the birth of Christ. For us church musicians, though, this time of year finds many of us busy, anxious, and stressed, a far cry from the Christmas cheer everyone around us espouses. Fortunately for us, our tasks during this season lead us to the truth, the ultimate cause of rejoicing.

The Histories of Some of Your Favorite Christmas Hymns

Did you know that one of the most famous Christmas hymns came about because a church’s organ broke just in time for Christmas Eve? Read on to learn about some of the season’s most well-known hymns, and while you read, get into the holiday mood by listening to our Advent and Christmas playlist.