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Top Lenten Hymns Survey: 2014

Check out the results of Nick Alexander's survey by clicking on this link: Are These The Ten Best Lent Hymns?

Here is a summary of Nick's 2014 survey results:

1. Lord, Who Throughout These Forty Days
2. I Heard The Voice Of Jesus Say
3. Adoramus Te, Christe
4. There’s A Wideness in God’s Mercy
5. The Glory of These Forty Days
6. Forty Days and Forty Nights
7. Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing
8. Attende Domine (tie)
9. Rock of Ages (tie)
10. Take Up Thy Cross (tie)

Note that Nick crafted a songbook resource, in response to this survey, for anybody who wishes to grow in their knowledge of these songs. Click on the link above to download Nick's songbook. Nick is currently doing surveys of favorite Holy Week and Easter worship songs. Click here to access The Holy Week Hymns Survey. And click here to access The Easter Hymns Survey. Both surveys will only take a minute of your time.

Also see this article which Nick cites in his survey report: Beyond Ashes by Simcha Fisher

Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) by Katholicus and Catholic Metal artists

Adam Miller of the metal band Katholicus sent admin Richard Schletty info about this groundbreaking project:

Via Crucis is a collaborative project with Catholic Metal artists providing a unique musical setting for the Way of the Cross. The album consists of 14 songs of varying styles of metal from eight Catholic artists. Each song corresponds to one of the fourteen stations of the Way of the Cross devotion. The listener will journey with Jesus from His condemnation to His death on the cross to His burial in the tomb. Each song is unique in its style and interpretation of the particular station. In between each song, a stanza of the Stabat Mater is performed in imitation of the traditional devotion of the Way of the Cross. The Stabat Mater is a hymn to the Sorrowful Mother (Mary) and is often sung by stanza between each meditation of the particular event or station of the Way of the Cross.

The contributing Catholic Metal artists on the album:

Katholicus: Infectious power rock/metal with passages of soaring guitars
Cradle Catholic: Latin prayer metal band with gothic and death metal overtones
Last Rites: Progressive thrash metal band with classical music underpinnings
Seven Sorrows: High energy blend of punk and metal
Dave Flitton: Composer and guitarist for Catholic rock band,
Critical Mass: Dedicated to bringing the Good News of Christ to the youth and young-at-heart.
Malchus: Progressive Death metal band from Poland
Divine Blood: Young industrial metal band from Canada
Theandric: Progressive heavy metal. For this project, provided a reflective acoustic track.

The concept of the album was based on the writings of St. Alphonsus Liguori on the Way of the Cross. This album is a great companion during Lent or anytime to center oneself to Christ while living in the world. The CD makes a great gift to anyone who loves metal and wants to live life more fully in their faith. This is a great Catholic alternative to secular metal bands.

Preview and purchase here:
CD Baby:

Song of Worship by Elizabeth Schmeidler

Elizabeth Schmeidler wrote to admin Richard Schletty:

I want to share this song/video I just uploaded ... to share during Lent. God bless you!

Elizabeth Schmeidler

givingUP – new charity-inspired Catholic hip hop project

Hello all,

I just released a 6 song EP with two fellow brothers in Christ entitled "givingUP" yesterday. All the songs are inspired by the work of 3 Christian charities and proceeds will be donated equally to those charities. Please consider picking up a copy and/or spreading the word via social media so we can support the efforts of these worthy causes. While you're there, you can even grab our earlier EP, "littleONES," for free:

givingUP album

God bless,
Matt (aka paradox)

Free Holy Week Anthems from St. James Music Press

Mark at St. James Music Press writes:

Since Holy Week and Easter is just a whistle away, we've just put some new music up on the site. But more than that - our good friend and cohort, Robert Lehman, has composed two short anthems for Holy Week that are yours for the downloading. FREE. (Yes, free.)

The Mandatum - A simple and stunning setting of the text traditionally used for the anthems sung at the footwashing service on Maundy Thursday. If you don't have a footwashing service, still consider these for your Maundy Thursday/Holy Week services. You can sing them at communion as well.

Crux Fidelis (anthem for Good Friday)

And, of course, these are FREE! No charge! Yes, it's true.

You do have to log-in to your account.

Peruse the music and a give them a listen (using the "preview" icon on the right). If you like them, go ahead and download the PDF file, print them out, make as many copies as you need, and use them in good health!

So if you haven't given up good music for Lent, head on over to the site and take a look.

Other NEW Offerings

This Joyful Eastertide - J. William Greene
For Organ - based on the hymn tune Vreuchten. Great for a prelude or postlude anytime during the Easter season.

Good Friday Reproaches - Richard Shephard
Traditionally done during the Good Friday service, here is a new setting with new language from Common Worship (UK). Easily accomplished by a good choir, since everything repeats a number of times. Heart rending and especially effective.

And twenty-five new 2014 offerings for Lent, Palm Sunday, and Easter.

Give us a look. You won't be sorry! A subscription that includes EVERYTHING on the site is still just $139 per year. Yes, everything!

Our best wishes for a Holy Ash Wednesday.

Your friends at St. James Music Press

PS. If you are a user of Facebook, please "like" us: We can get a lot of information about new and upcoming works, free music, and events on this page. And, quite frankly, we're very likable!

Contact Us
phone: 877.822.0304

Writing what's wrong

The world needs positive music to help offset the negativity and false values which infect our lives. How can we write about sin and cultural death in an engaging and affirming way? I have tried to do this in my own lyrics. Here are samples of my lyrics:

Leaving Flesh

Leaving flesh gates the soul,
like a bird that soars with grace,
like a worm that leaves the hole,
taken to an extraordinary place.

Give your all until the dawn.
Take what little stuff you need.
Smile until the shades are drawn,
knowing well that you've planted the seed.

Gift of knowing, gift of feeling.
Golden orb, precious sight.
Life's abrasions the sun is healing
for those who simply step out into the light.

What is money? What is power?
Lust and vengeance, blood and bile?
Selfless motives don't devour.
Look for treasure in a neighbor's smile.

Music ©2006 Hendrik Steiner and Karl Anselm. Lyrics ©2006 Richard C. Schletty

You Are

See the light that streams from the darkness
from a soul who is weeping.
Hear their silent lips, 
the shuffle of tired feet. 

Bring your gifts to the doorstep
of a heart in a sling.
Bring your juice pressed from fruit
both sour and sweet.

You are the poet, you are the clown,
you are the artist able to fashion
a new smile on someone draggled by despair.
Take the lead, plant the seed of hope with compassion. 
Help a shattered spirit find repair.

Rain, tears and fears, the falling and the rising:
necessary grayness for the whetting of new growth.
Life and death in circles ever flowing.
Inspiration, expiration -- not one but both.

Music ©2006 Hendrik Steiner and Karl Anselm. Lyrics ©2006 Richard C. Schletty

Please feel free to comment below. Thank you!

Catholic Music Podcasts

Here are some podcasts that speak to Catholic music. Please send us links to your favorite music-related podcasts.
Also check out these podcasts which are not available in iTunes:

The Music Ministry of Maureen and Bill Hayes

Spirit & Song Podcasts

Catholic Music Express - by Jim O'Meara

We need your help – Tony Siino, Catholic Speaker, Evangelist, and Musician/Composer

Sherry posted this at the Yahoo group TopCatholicSongs. Consider giving Deacon Tony a Facebook "like." - Richard Schletty, creative admin

Hi Friends- My musical partner and dear friend Deacon Tony Siino has been doing Parish Missions, speaking engagements and spiritual concerts locally (NY & NJ) for the past 6 years. Ordained in 1991, he is an enthusiastic and dynamic speaker and an outstanding composer of Catholic Christian music. Recently, he was approached by an agency that would like to promote him and take his ministry to the next level. This would be a dream come true for him!! Neither he nor I am not savvy in social media, but we were told that it would help if he created a Facebook page. I am simply asking if you could help promote his ministry by “liking” his page and inviting your friends to like it as well. His page can be found at If anyone has any suggestions or advice as to how to get him more visibility, please contact us at God bless you and thank you for your support! God’s Peace- Sherry Ottoson

Beautiful a cappella Gregorian Chant – Benedictines of Mary

[This note came to me from my friend Luiz in Belem, Brazil. - creative admin R. Schletty] 

From: Richard at

Dear Friend of the Holy Souls,

Just wished to share with you a wonderful discovery I recently made. These 22 very talented and devoted young women (average age in the convent is 28) in Missouri at the Benedictine Priory of "Our Lady of Ephesus". They sing together about 3 hours a day always a capella - without any instruments.

...can also search for "Benedictines of Mary"

They are very talented singers, and in 2012 they were number one on national billboards in the category of "Classical Traditional Artist" ! Of course they give all the credit to God the Saints and the Angels !

I sit and listen to them as I work on the Purgatory Project each day and hoped you would be as blessed by their singing as I have been.

May God Bless you and keep you in His perfect peace,
Richard to enter your souls living or deceased. Read Full Story >>>

Popple - an acoustic humor rock band

Popple Documentary

Visit Popple's web site:

Read Full Story >>>

New Music From STREETS OF ROME - Contemporary Catholic Singer-songwriter Band

We are happy to announce our new single, "Bring It Back to Soul" - now available on iTunes, CDBaby, Spotify, Amazon, and other sources. Check out this song and our other releases on iTunes:

Streets of Rome
Contemporary Catholic/Christian Rock
Released: 2014

lyrics at

Divine Mercy Songs

The Second Sunday of Easter is now known as Divine Mercy Sunday, a devotion popularized by Saint Faustina. Here is a list of great songs that can bless your Divine Mercy Sunday.

Original post by Nick Alexander. Edited by Richard Schletty.

  • Divine Mercy Flood My Soul by Annie Karto
  • Faustina's Song by Mark Mallet
  • Jesus, We Trust In You by Critical Mass
  • I Will Carry You by Sean Clive
  • Lamb of God by Greg Walton
  • Jesus, I Trust In You by Angelina
  • Act of Contrition by Fr. David Hemann
  • Careless Blunder by Nick Alexander
  • Heal Us, Lord by Nancy Krebs
  • Calling Us Home by David A. Vogel
  • With The Lord There Is Mercy by News at Eleven
  • Anyone Who Comes To Me by Jaymie Wolfe Stuart
  • Love Wins All by Matthew Baute
  • Thank You, Jesus by Bob Filoramo
  • Jesus, I Trust In You by Donna Lee (original and acoustic versions)
  • Now You Come To Me by Kitty Cleveland


Take Up Our Cross

Nick Alexander writes:
I was really taken aback when I heard this song for the first time. It is truly a remarkable achievement by Curtis Stephan, Sarah Hart and Marc Byrd. It's simple, but it's very deep and profound. I cannot endorse this song enough. (Now, only if the spiritandsong gurus provide a way for this MP3 to be made available for purchase...).

Addendum by R.Schletty, 2/11/14: Purchase MP3 and sheet music at one of these sources:

H/T: T.C. Long

Last Day and Catholic Underground (Chicago)

CATHOLIC UNDERGROUND (Chicago) is held on the first Thursday of (nearly) every month. It is hosted by the JP2 Newman Center at University of Illinois Chicago, right in the heart of downtown Chicago. It started in September 2008and runs during the academic school year at UIC. It is produced by Spirit Juice Studios

Catholic Underground was originally started by the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, and was a direct response to a call that began with Pope John Paul II, and is continued by Pope Benedict XVI. Pope John Paul II said that because the Gospel lives in conversation with culture, we must be fearless in crossing the cultural threshold of the communication and information revolution now taking place.

Each Catholic Underground consists of three parts:
PART 1 - Eucharistic adoration, which provides a window for each person to personally encounter Jesus Christ.

PART 2 – The showcasing of Catholic artists which includes music, poetry, visual art dancers, film, etc.
Here we experience the “new evangelization”.

PART 3 - Food and Drinks are provided for fellowship with each other.

Here is a video of the band Last Day at Catholic Underground.

H/T: Last Day

Workout Playlist From Dr Kevin Vost ("Fit For Eternal Life")

A guest post from Dr. Kevin Vost, author of Fit For Eternal Life: A Christian Approach for Working Out, Eating, Right, and Building the Virtues of Fitness in Your Soul. (Sophia, 2007).

I was asked for an “ideal workout play list” so voila, here’s mine:

  1. Irish Blessing by The Priests from the album The Priests
  2. Benedictus by The Priests from the album The Priests
  3. Salad Bowl by Nick Alexander from the album I Wanna Be Debated
  4. Nicene Creed by Nick Alexander from the album I Wanna Be Debated
  5. Pie Jesu by The Priests from the album The Priests
  6. Hip to Be Square by Huey Lewis & The News from the album Greatest Hits: Huey Lewis & The News
  7. Cry of the Celts by Ronan Hardiman from the album Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance
  8. Ave Maria by Kitty Cleveland from the album Sacred Arias
  9. I Surrender by Sharmane from the album I Surrender Single
  10. Mass No.1 in D Minor for Soloists, Chorus and Orchestra: 1. Kyrie by Bernarda Fink, Christoph Prégardien, John Eliot Gardiner, Luba Orgonasova, Monteverdi Choir & Wiener Philharmoniker from the album Bruckner: Mass No. 1 in D Minor & Motets

This list should be good for at least two cardio or strength workouts. The Priests mellow tunes will gently warm you up and then boom, here come Nick’s fast-paced pieces (and Salad Bowl will help you eat right when you’re done). Let the heart rate settle down a bit with the reverent Pie Jesu, and then pump it up again with Hip to be Square. (Sure this one’s secular, but it has a good beat and Huey sings about getting in shape, to boot.) Speaking of boots (or at least dancing shoes), The Cry of the Celts from Lord of the Dance is a high-energy tune for the highest intensity portion of your aerobic session (or strength training set.) Proceed to cool down with Kitty Cleveland’s beautiful Ave Maria, until you are ready to surrender with Sharmane Adams’s I Surrender. Anton Bruckner was a devout Catholic composer of the 19th century and his Mass #1 is hauntingly beautiful and over a half hour long. Listen to it some day when you’re out taking a long walk.

May God bless you as you psyche up your minds, pump up your muscles, lift up your hearts (and give your ears a good workout in the process). Kevin Vost, Psy.D. Read Full Story >>>