Marche Triomphale, Sigfrid Karg-Elert
This is a grand work by a German contemporary of Debussy, a march based on the hymn “Now Thank We All Our God”, to lead us into Palm Sunday.
O Sacred Head, Now Wounded, arr. Robert Farrell
This hymn is also known as the “Passion Chorale”, and is meant to move us from The Great Entry of Palm Sunday into Passion Sunday and the beginning of Holy Week.
Lead on, O King Eternal
This text, written by Earnest Shurtluff in 1888, seemed fitting to offer during Holy week, as we follow Jesus in His Passion. This hymn also has a message about service that speaks to the times in which we live.
Prayer of St. Gregory, Alan Hovhaness
Alan Hovhaness described this work as “a prayer in darkness”, which seems very appropriate to share here the day before Good Friday. The personage referred to in the work’s title is St. Gregory the Illuminator, who at the beginning of the fourth century brought Christianity to Armenia which was the composers ancestral home….Hovhaness had a strong belief that music should stir the emotions, and much of his music has these spiritual elements in it.
The Converted Thief, arr. by Lloyd Pfautsch
This is a hymn for Good Friday originally composed in 1826 and found in the early American hymn book, The Sacred Harp. The setting for organ is quite brief and beautifully gentle, full of hope, as Jesus and the dying thief sing together a final exchange of confession, redemption, and love.