Where to find music suggestions for church services

There are many resources that can be used to choose music to use in regular church services.

This is a list of resources providing English-language suggestions.

It is grouped by denomination, and also shows the national focus of each list.


Roman Catholic

  • St Louis Jesuits Sunday web-site
    The Music of Sunday's Mass page has some helpful links, including "Sunday's music in parishes" which lists the music being used in a number of American parishes each week.



  • Canadian Bishop's Conference:
Suggestions from the Canadian Book of Worship

 


  • CanticaNOVA publications 
    Music and liturgical suggestions for Year A,  Year B   and Year C, from an American company specialising in quality / traditional music.  Strong emphasis on Latin and official texts.


  • Newman Centre for Faith and Reason
    Suggestions from a parish / education centre which is based in Ireland but operates under the auspices of a large American Catholic university.  Suggestions tend to be from American publishers, but based on material from the last 30 years that is now well-known and accessible to parishes with more limited musical resources.

  • Liturgy Music Planner
    A set of suggestions from the Archdiocese of Southwark, in England.   Includes traditional hymns, and also more popular folk-hymn genre suggestions.


  • Word to Worship
    Website set up by an American software engineer and volunteer worship leader, giving scripture-linked suggestions for contemporary style songs and hymns based on the day's readings.  The approach (list all songs tagged for any of the day's readings) sometimes gives odd suggestions   (eg "O Come O Come Emmanuel" for the Transfiguration in August).


  • Ignatius Pew Missal
    Short lists of suggestions from an American missal publisher, whose listings include the "Propers", ie entrance and Communion antiphons.     Mainly traditional hymns.




    • Voices As One
      Suggestions from a American publications company, focusing on the contemporary Christian music (CCM) genre.
      (Until June 2022, when WLP was amalgamated into GIA Publications.)

    • Soundboard:  Setting the Tone
      (From July 2022)
      Suggestions from a American publications company, focusing on the contemporary Christian music (CCM) genre, now incorporating some material from another major American Catholic publisher.



    • Music Repertoire Suggestions 
      Suggestions from the Diocese of Wollongong in Australia, from a Core Repertoire they have established. Based on the readings and the Propers / Antiphons for the day.


    • Liturgical Song
      A replacement site for Music Repertoire Suggestions, produced by the former director of music fore the Diocese of Wollongong  (may not be being updated).


    • Music for Liturgy 
      Suggestions from the Diocese of Auckland, New Zealand.   Includes Maori and English language suggestions.



    • The Summit On-line 
      Suggestions from the diocese of Melbourne, Australia.  Includes material from Australian and international sources, and various genres.


    • Free-use Sunday Hymn Suggestions  
      This site's own listing of hymns that match the Sunday reading themes.  Based in Ireland, includes suggestions ideas from any  English-speaking sources.




    Psalms and service music


    • Music for Mass  
      Settings of the psalm and gospel acclamation produced by a musician in the United Kingdom.   Includes settings for both UK and US approved scripture translations. Focuses on simple, singable tunes.


    • Bear Music
      Settings of the Psalms and other antiphons from a liturgist-composer based in the UK. 

    • Modern Psalter
      Contemporary settings of the psalms, verbatim from the Catholic lectionary and designed for liturgical use.  They are written by a volunteer team with members in the UK, US, Indonesia and possibly elsewhere.  Each psalm-setting has a PDF songsheet and MP3 recording.

    • PraySing Ministry
      Settings of the Psalms from the Philippines.  Some in Tagalog, some in English.





        Resources that don't offer hymn suggestions directly, but provide information about the day's readings and other prayers include:
        • The Directory on Homelitics
          A listing of key themes from the readings, and links to Catechism sections related to them.  
          More about it, including links.



        Anglican / Episcopalian:   Church of England-Ireland-Scotland-etc

        • Oremus Hymnal

          A hymnal-based site that aimed to be "the comprehensive source of information about the extensive tradition of Anglican and English-language hymnody".
          The main site has now been removed, but music suggestions based on the Revised Common Lectionary remain (although none of the links work) - these lists are very long.
          Year A
          Year B
          Year C

        • Weekly Worship / Starters for Sunday
          Resources and suggestions from the Church of Scotland




        • Church of Ireland Music Resources

          Extensive suggestions from this island of Ireland member of the Anglican communion, based closely on the day's readings.
          Use the calendar in the left-hand sidebar to select a specific day.



        • Local Shared Ministry Resources
          Suggestions from a New Zealand based ministry support organsation, focused on smaller churches




        Methodist




        Lutheran

        • LCA Worship Planner  Produced by the Lutheran Church of Australia, this is described as "Everything lay-readers need to prepare worship" - including hymn suggestions.


        • logo of the Lutheran Coalition for Renewal - a voice and network for confessing Lutherans
          Lutheran CORE

          Suggestions from an (American based?) network for confessing Lutherans, which supports and connects Lutheran individuals and congregations who seek to live in accord with Biblical and confessional teachings and practices.  Possibly an unofficial site from the church perspective?   But comprehensive.



        United Church of Christ

        • Life in Liturgy
          Suggestions from an American (West Virginian) Church of Christ, which aims to strengthen their own  congregations ... and their sisters and brothers in faith throughout the ecumenical Church.
          Organsied as a blog - so if you are planning forwards, you need to scroll back almost three years to find the equivalent week.


        Non-denominational RCL-based resources

        • Singing from the Lectionary
          A blog with weekly song, hymn and recorded music suggestions and resources for worship - based on the Revised Common Lectionary.  These are based on suggestions made to a Uniting Church, by a person with a background in Methodist hymn-singing, Scripture in Song, Praise and Worship bands, African American Gospel, Taize, Iona and African song, American hymnody and Sacred Harp singing, and the Catholic Mass and cantored Psalms, who aims for songs that are beautiful, intelligent, and inclusive.


        • Worship and Preaching

          Resources for preachers and worship leaders using the Revised Common Lectionary - prepared by an Australian academic and retired Uniting Church minister.

        • The Text This Week
          Providing "a wide variety of resources for study and liturgy based on the 3-year Revised Common Lectionary" cycle.  It presents "a diverse variety of resources for scripture study, reflection and liturgy, and purposefully do not restrict the resources to any particular theological/ideological position".  Does not include music suggestions specifically - but does include an index to sources of artwork and also movies.

        • The Billabong
          Prepared by a retired Australian Uniting Church minister, this site has reflections and hymns suggestions for each week, based on the Revised Common Lectionary.

        • reWorship
          A set of scriptural resources, suitable for Lectionary and non-Lectionary worship, prepared by an Assistant Professor of Worship and Music, Canadian Mennonite University.

        • Together to Celebrate
          Prepared by an Australian member of the Uniting Church, who has a background in children's youth and family ministry, and hymn-book editing.

        • Forest Refuge Lectionary Music
          A set of RCL-organised resources prepared by a classically-trained American musician with substantial experience in Latin America.



        This is not a complete list: if you know other websites that could be included, please leave a message in the Comments box near the bottom of the page.

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          3 comments:

          1. WOULD YOU BE PLANNING ON DOING ANY HYMN SELECTIONS FOR THE FEAST DAYS AND SUNDAYS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR FOR THE TRADITIONAL LATIN MASS
            THANKS
            DAVE

            ReplyDelete
            Replies
            1. Hi David - to be honest, I hadn't considered that.

              If you mean the regular (NO) Mass in Latin, then the lectionary used is the same, so the hymn suggestions here would still apply

              If you mean the Extra-ordinary form (EF), then the one-year lectionaray cycle is used. It's not something I've had to investigate - I don't even know where to find the specified readings or any hymn-suggestions for this on-line. However I do know that many musicians playing for EF Masses do not use hymns at all, so suspect that a list would not be widely used.

              You may find that a request posted to the CCMA discussion forum (https://forum.musicasacra.com/forum/discussion) gets some suggestions.

              Delete

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