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Liturgy and Music in Lent

As we prepare for Lent, we also prepare to change the tone of our liturgy. For example, at the beginning of the service we omit the sung Gloria, and instead use seasonally appropriate parts of our prayer book such as (on different Sundays) the Great Litany (BCP p. 148), the Penitential Order (p. 351), and the Decalogue (p. 350). We don’t say any “alleluias” during Lent, and the fraction anthem will be spoken rather than sung.

The service music that we use each week will also change to fit the more subdued mood. We will sing simple, unaccompanied chant versions of the Kyrie (Lord, have mercy) and Sanctus (Holy, holy, holy), S-95 and S-123 in the hymnal. Organ music will be more restrained. The organ postludes during Lent will be five blessing/sending songs from different cultures, sending us out for our own mission and ministry.

I hope these liturgical changes will be helpful reminders in your Lenten journey. I would love to hear about other Lenten music or liturgy that you have experienced as meaningful!

Daniel Brinson, Director of Church Music