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Story Behind the Song: Whispers From Heaven

Donna Lee writes:

My song, Whispers From Heaven has helped me in my own healing process. My daughter would have been 22 years old this year. Making the decision to have an abortion when I was 22 years old in 1986 changed my life forever. It is something that I have thought about every day of my life since then. In the beginning of my music ministry I was too afraid to talk about it when I gave my testimony about my return to the Catholic church. It was in Australia at a Marian conference that I was singing at in 1994 where I finally got the courage to talk about it. Ever since then it is hard for me not to share about because God's forgiveness, love and mercy is infinite. My story is too long to tell here. Some of you have heard it. I am such a fan of Divine Mercy and I speak and sing of it wherever I can. My personal journey of forgiveness has been a long one and although I have forgiven myself, and I know that God forgave me and my daughter too--I still can't help but think about what she may have looked like or the woman that should would have become and all the things I missed out on being a mom for the first time. Thank you Jesus for your mercy. You can listen to my song here in its entirity, since itunes only runs 30 seconds of it.

Will You Speak For Me? Lyrics

Teresa Smith, formerly of Crossed Hearts, sang the tender "Will You Speak For Me?" (as written by husband David Smith), from the perpective of an unborn child. It is a fragile-but-forceful performance. Will You Speak for Me? Words and music: David C. Smith If I could for the words, I would say How much I long to see the day When I can laugh and sing and be Who I am being formed to be But here I cannot say a word My voice will only go unheard Yet in my heart this questions burns Will you speak for me? To a world where I am The least of its problems The least of its worries I am the least of these Mom, I know something is troubling you When your heart races, mine races too But as you decide what you should do Will you speak for me? To a world where I am The least of its problems The least of its worries I am the least of these Some say they just don't have the time I'm out of sight and out of mind Maybe you're the voice I've hoped to find Will you speak for me?

Ten Exceptional Pro-Life Songs

Going to a rally this coming week? Get yourself inspired by these songs that will encourage you to stand for life.

Pro-Life Video

Courtesy of the uber-talented Robert Galea, from Australia.

Epiphany Lullaby

Courtesy of the friendly folks at NewCatholicMusic-dot-com. They will be selling the sheet music there too.

Top Ten Songs of the Year

The results are in! The topcatholicsongs community has voted, and these are
our Top Catholic Songs of 2007.

  1. Sean Clive's Amazed from Amazed
  2. Teresa Smith's Holy Holy Holy from Blooming
  3. Joel Stein's Satisfied from Always Forward
  4. Nick Cardilino's Discover the Way from Discover the Way
  5. News at Eleven's Alleluia (Raise Your Voice) from Here to the End
  6. Nick Alexander's Holy Thursday from I Wanna Be Debated
  7. Rise's Stand the Line from Stand the Line
  8. Gretchen HarrisBreathe from Sing to the Lord
  9. Lynn Geyer's Spiritsong from Music of the Light
  10. Dan Dúet's Traces of Jesus from Touch the Flame

Hearty congratulations to all participating musicians. Be sure to check out these incredible songs. Support Catholic Music today! Read Full Story >>>

Story Behind the Song: God Almighty, Little Child

Gerard Faucheux writes:

A few years ago, during midnight mass in Brookhaven, Mississippi, a song was played that just kind of settled in my soul. I don't really remember the melody or the words - just the feeling. Something about the dark church and the sound of the guitar and gentle singing just created something that has never left. During one of my long commutes, ideas started coming, comparing the awesomeness of God with the frailty of a little baby and other paradoxes due to Jesus, the son of God, the 2nd person of the blessed trinity, coming to live as one of us, to die as one of us, to die for all of us. Why? For love of us. I still don't understand this love. Even on my best days, I don't deserve this love. Yet while we were sinners, he died for us. (Rom 5:8) Wow! Thank you, Jesus!

I was thrilled (and extremely nervous) to be able to play and sing this song in my home church, St. Joseph's in Paulina, Louisiana a few years ago. A dark church - midnight mass - the sound of guitar and (somewhat) gentle singing - I hope that someone else was touched and changed the way that I was years before.

God Almighty, Little Child Words and music by Gerard C. Faucheux, Sr. God Almighty, little child. King of Kings so meek and mild. Creator of the universe cradled in her arms to nurse. Why did You come? Why leave Your home? Why become a creature so low? You came because You loved, now let us love You. On Your birthday, Jesus, it’s time to recall That You humbled yourself to save one and all. So we sing Glory to God in the Highest And on Earth, peace to all. We lift our voice in Alleluias For You came to save us all, For You came to save us all. Earth creator, on Earth You dwell. Omnipresent, Emmanuel. Unbound by space, unbound by time. Confined by days and trapped by night. Equal to God, but You lived as man, I try, but I cannot understand. Your ways are high above the ways of man... Glory to God in the Highest And on Earth, peace to all. We lift our voice in Alleluias For You came to save us all, For You came to save us all. Copyright © 2005 Gerard C. Faucheux, Sr.

Advent Healing and Hope Mass

On Tuesday evening, I played for a charismatic "Healing and Hope" mass for the Archdiocese of Hartford. For those unfamiliar with such liturgies, it is an opportunity to incorporate the dynamic elements in an informal prayer gathering with a formal Catholic liturgy, oftentimes with tremendous results. It's always thrilling for me to play these masses, because it gives me the freedom to do what I love to do best--lead congregations with a mixture of contemporary and traditional worship songs. I believe wholeheartedly that the elements from these types of songs complement each other--a traditional liturgy has solemnity and reverence, whereas the music from contemporary praise choruses have a personal, vibrant quality. The former emphasizes God is Holy, and the latter emphasizes God is closer than your best friend. Both are needed. Being the season of Advent, I focussed my song selection with laser-like precision to focus on Advent themes: particularly the expectancy of Jesus' imminent return. Choosing songs that stayed true to the Advent season, while being appropriate for a healing liturgy (singable, congregation-friendly, God-centered, and beautiful). Having the original "Holy Is the Lord" (Steubenville Press) and a CCLI license at my disposal, I worked hard to get a plan in order. First off, was the prelude before the liturgy. Charismatic healing liturgies sometimes allow for a few up-tempo songs to be played before the actual formal liturgy begins. My job was to find those songs that people knew, or people could easily pick up, so that they could join in singing. The songs I chose were:
  • Soon And Very Soon / Come And Go With Me to that Land medley
  • Jesus is Coming Again (Vineyard, from Winds of Worship 11-Australia)
  • Prepare the Way (Passion, from Charlie Hall and Louie Giglio)
Only "Jesus is Coming Again" did I print out on the page, the rest were simple enough that people could pick them up without using a songsheet. Then came the songs for the liturgy. The entrance hymn was:O Come O Come Emmanuel (verses 1, 5 and 6).I knew that the verses correllated with specific weeks in the Advent calendar, but for here I guessed that verses 5 and 6 were meant for week 3 of Advent. The responsorial psalm was sung, by an original melody that I tried to keep as simple as possible. Homily: Obviously, I don't play any songs during the homily--but the priest was a singing priest, and he insisted in getting the congregation to sing at certain points, particularly an original, lovely "Alleluia" setting, as well as the classic songs "Spirit of the Living God" and "There's Just Something About that Name." I wish more priests did this. Offeratory: At the Name of Jesus (Jim Cowan's rendering). Personally, I could have gone after any number of melodies for this hymn, but Jim Cowan's rendering is the most familiar for this crowd, and is the simplest to pick up for neophytes. It also sounds pretty good. Very strong Advent themes, particularly with the last verse. Communion. The antiphon text was Matthew 1:23 (His name will be called Emmanuel, which means God is with us). This was great, because there were a number of songs that used this very text, including the very popularly used Emmanuel by Bob McKee. But McKee's rendering wasn't long enough, so I searched for a complementary song that can flow together. To my surprise, the solution was already in the "Holy is the Lord" resource at my disposal, a simple song His Name Shall Be Called, which borrows a melody from classical music. The songs can be forced in the same key, and they play right off of each other. Of all the musical achievements last night, this I was most proud of. Recessional: Come Holy Ghost. At a healing mass, as the prayer teams are lined up, this sort of song is mandatory. This, to me, was the only derivation from the Advent season. After this, I was free to sing whatever song I wanted, in a muted tone, keeping a worshipful flow. I created special resources that allowed me to keep the focus specifically tailored to both Advent and the ministry of healing. The songs I chose (to the best of my memory) were the following (and not in this order):
  • Lord of All (Jim Cowan)
  • Jesus, Come to Us (David Haas)
  • Even So Come (Kevin Prosch)
  • Even So (Terry MacAlmon)
  • Lo He Comes With Clouds Descending (chanted a cappella with Tantum Ergo melody)
  • To You O Lord (Graham Kendrick)
  • Let Us Adore (Hillsong)
  • Emmanuel (Hillsong)
  • Christ Circle Round Us (chanted a cappella)
  • Wonderful Maker (Chris Tomlin/Matt Redman)
  • Help Us Our God (underused classic Vineyard)
The evening was real incredible, and I am just blessed to have been a part of it.
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