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Dear Partners in Ministry,

Happy March! This promises to be a whirlwind month, with two concerts (Bach's Music Box this Friday, and CityMusic on March 18), a Taizé prayer service on March 31, and that whole "prepare for Triduum" thing we're doing. Please take time on your own to review and reinforce what we're working on in rehearsal... a little bit of time— even ten minutes— each day makes us all better prepared.

The Parish Collaborative Hymn

After some serious discernment, sketching, revising, thesarus-using, and peer review, I'm proud to share "Bless the Lord," the hymn text that developed from those who attended our 100th GIFT session back in January. As promised, we'll put this work into practice, singing it for the Preparation of the Gifts on Sunday, March 19. 

The text is set to the meter 87 87 D, meaning a repeated pattern of 8 syllables and 7 syllables. This is one of the most often used meters for hymn texts, from "Alleluia! Sing to Jesus" to "Sing of Mary." There are many tunes composed for this meter, and this text theoretically could be sung to any of them, but we'll use NETTETON, the 19th-century melody we sing most often as "Sing a New Church."

I'll hand out a simple 2-part arrangement for us next week. I'm setting it in the key of Db, which will give it a very subtle warmth compared to the usual key of D there's a difference, I swear). I can't wait to share this with the parish, especially with the parishioners who made this text possible!

  1. Lord our God, your children praise you,
    Gathered here in sacred space
    To rejoice and to remember
    your compassion, love, and grace:
    Bless the Lord with hearts and voices;
    Bless the Lord, our souls proclaim!
    Here and now, let all within us
    Bless the Lord’s most Holy Name.

  2. You are balm for all that ails us; 
    You redeem us from the grave:
    You restore our weary spirits,
    You forgive, you heal, you save.
    Bless the Lord, from child to elder;
    Bless the Lord, our hearts proclaim!
    Reconciled, let all within us
    Bless the Lord’s most Holy Name.

  3. Though our days are few and fleeting,
    And to dust we surely fade,
    In your steadfast love and mercy
    We will rise: restored, remade!
    Bless the Lord now and forever;
    Bless the Lord, our days proclaim!
    Age to age, let all within us
    Bless the Lord’s most Holy Name.

  4. You are light! We fear no darkness.
    You are hope! We spurn despair.
    You are life and resurrection!
    Let us all your reign prepare.
    Bless the Lord in faithful witness; 
    Bless the Lord, our lives proclaim!
    Here and now, let all within us
    Bless the Lord’s most Holy Name.

Text © 2023, Tony Ward and Saint Noel Parish.


  • Since there were two pieces not ready for pick up last week, you'll be doing some picking up and turning in this Thursday.

Pick up:

  • 2.010 Shepherd Me, O God (Haugen)
  • 2.016 Psalm 22: My God, My God/Dios Mío, Dios Mío (Cosas)

Turn in:

  • 1.003 · Mass of St. Mary Magdelene (Hart)
  • 2.015 · Psalm 51: Complete Setting (Ward) 
  • 3.059 · I Received the Living God (French carol, arr. Ward)


  • score · Taizé ostinatos for Lent
  • 2.016 Psalm 22: My God, My God/Dios Mío, Dios Mío (Cosas)
  • 3.061 · Take and Eat (Joncas)
  • 7.006 · O vos omnes (Casals)
  • 8.011 · Alleluia (Manuel)
  • JS 38 · Ps 33: Lord, Let Your Mercy (Dufford)
  • JS 652 · This Alone (Manion)
  • JS 776 · Ubi Caritas (Hurd)



Penitential Act: BB 5 · JS 168 · Chant Mass: Kyrie

Children’s Dismissal (Sundays): WA · [score] · The Word of God (Ward)

Gospel Acclamation: BB 877 · JS 178 · Mass of Renewal: Lenten Gospel Acclamation (Stephan)

Holy: BB 878 · JS 179 · Mass of Renewal: Holy (Stephan)

Mystery of Faith: BB 879 · JS 180 · Mass of Renewal: We Proclaim Your Death (Stephan)

Amen: BB 882 · JS 183 · Mass of Renewal: Amen (Stephan)

Lamb of God: BB 863 · JS 174 · Chant Mass: Agnus Dei

MARCH 5 · Second Sunday of Lent

Gathering Song: WA · Taizé chants: Bless the Lord

Responsorial Psalm: BB 770 · JS 38 · Ps 33: Lord, Let Your Mercy (Dufford)

Preparation of the Gifts: BB 359 · 3.061 · Take and Eat (Joncas)

Communion: BB 404 · JS 652 · This Alone (Manion)

Sending Forth: BB 601 · JS 824 · Christ, Be Our Light (Farrell) Verses 1, 2, 5

MARCH 12 · Third Sunday of Lent

Gathering Song: Taizé chants: With You, O Lord

Responsorial Psalm: BB 797 · JS 71 · Ps 95: If Today You Hear His Voice (Soper)

Preparation of the Gifts: BB 517 · JS 739 · O Beauty, Ever Ancient (O’Connor)

Communion: BB 355 · JS 788 · Bread of Life (Farrell)

Sending Forth: BB 662 · JS 535 · Change Our Hearts (Cooney)

MARCH 19 · Fourth Sunday of Lent

Gathering Song: WA · Taizé chants: In the Lord I'll Be Ever Thankful 

Responsorial Psalm: BB 461 · 2.010 · Ps 23: Shepherd Me, O God (Haugen)

Preparation of the Gifts: WA · (score) Bless the Lord (NETTLETON/St. Noel)

Communion: BB 347 · JS 789 · Lamb of God/Taste and See (Kendzia)

Sending Forth: BB 390 · JS 813 · City of God (Schutte)


Lent and Holy Week (February 22–April 2, 2023)

Triduum and Easter Season (April 6–May 28, 2023)



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