Anthems for Lent, Holy Week, Easter Day

There’s a short span of “breathing room” in a church musician’s life from Christmas to Lent before worship changes to a different focus. The use of the Liturgical Calendar as a guideline for planning worship during Lent and Holy Week can be advantageous in keeping worship focused rather than enduring multiple weeks of penitential floundering among liturgies, music, and spoken words. Lent begins March 1, 2017 with the service of Ash Wednesday.  In order to facilitate preparation of music for the Year A Sundays in Lent, Palm/Passion Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Day, the staff of CMI has perused thousands of anthems to make recommendations during this time.

The Sundays in Lent 2017, Year A, in the Revised Common Lectionary, are outlined by calendar week along with scriptures and the principle idea for each reading.  All can be found in the eLibrary catalogue.  Recommended anthems are listed for worship services with names of composers.  The term (varied) implies unlisted composers who have anthem settings of the same text. Search by title to identify other composers who have set the text.

The anthems for Palm/Passion Sunday are all based on scriptures appropriate to Year A.  The musical selections described are compositions composed within the last five years.  A general description of each piece is given.  Since there are so many titles listed for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Day, no descriptions are given in that list.