Monday, May 30, 2011

Praise God!

There was a question posted on the Catholic Spiritual Direction blog asking for help with praising God.

Q: Can you give any help on how to learn to praise God? I enjoy going to Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, and would really like to learn how to praise Him. I don’t feel my words are adequately expressing the praise I really would like to give. Thanksgiving is easier, but I would be grateful for some advice on the praise side.

The answers from Fr. John Bartunek were outstanding:
Read more:

I enjoy praising by singing.  I listen to KLOVE, or my rather extensive, for a 43 year old, Christian Music library.  Well, I don't just listen, like I said, I sing.  I love to sing.  I sing while bike riding wearing my new Nano, I sing for as long as I have breath while running, I sing in my car the most, even when driving with my kids, and with their friends.  It helps that they attend a Christian school where they sing many of the same songs in chapel.  I imagine it would be a little awkward if we sent them to one of the Catholic high schools.

Or would it?

Are there any Catholics out there that are listening and singing to Christian praise music?  If so, please leave a comment!

Not all the music is praise music, of course, as some of it is meant to reach us in our sadness, disappointment, and frustration.  Some of it is about conversion.  Some is thanksgiving, some just offering love.  Maybe I'll have posts in the future with some of the non-praise music as there are some great, great songs.

There is at least one Catholic that gets play time, and concert time on the Christian music circuit.  His name is Matt Maher, and some of you are probably familiar with him.  I love his music and his witness.  He has a blog on his site where he writes his reflections on each Sunday's readings.  I happened across his first one where he was explaining the Lectionary to an audience that would  not be that familiar with a Lectionary.  Although he does have quite a following among Catholics as well, and plays a number of Catholic events during the year

This post is about Praising God, though and here are a few of my favorite songs that do just that, along with the lyrics so we can sing and praise together.  First 2 are by Chris Tomlin who is probably the #1 performer of Praise and Worship music at this time.
Well this one doesn't have lyrics but, still great song.  Listen 2-3 times you'll have the words, it is Song of Love praising the three persons in the Glorious Holy Trinity performed by Rebecca St. James.
Finally Matt Maher puts the praise in the Our Father to music, and it doesn't sound like the Perry Como version:


  1. Colleen,
    We don't only have favorite saints in common, I listen to Christian praise music all the time! In the car, at home - I have a number of CD's that I play and sing to while running errands and cleaning my house :) I only do this when nobody is around because my voice leaves something to be desired (lol)!

  2. I'm out planting the garden right now (except for this water break), and I'm listening to Jim Cowan's CD: Millennium Three; Awesome God. It was recorded at one of Franciscan University's teen summer conferences. It is awesome praise music (which is probably why so many teens attend the conferences).

    I go to the Defending the Faith conference at the end of July, and the praise music there hits right to your core also. If you've never tried one of their weekend conferences, you are missing something.

  3. I read a book called Swimming with Scapulars and the author poked fun at the Glory and Praise song books I remember growing up with. Now we use Gather. What happened and why did the old books get so much heat?

  4. Roccie,
    I haven't read that book yet, although I thought of downloading it to Kindle to at least find the reference. There is within Catholic Church a group that want to eliminate all but organ music from the Mass. Their view would be something like, the "spirit" of Vatican II got hold of liturgical music to be more inclusive and next thing you know we have guitar, drums, and rain sticks. In the Byzantine celebration of the Divine Liturgy that I attend on Sunday's there is no music, only chant. Glory and Praise was more guitar and piano, and you'll remember we would have to go to the green section in the missalette to find the more traditional hymns. Gather still has some guitar and piano type music, but it also has the traditional hymns so you can just use the one book. Since I most often attend a Byzantine Catholic church that only has a capella chant, I do enjoy going to the one church in our area on occasion that on Sunday nights has teen choir, with piano, guitars, flute, trumpet, drums and they are singing some of the newer Christian praise music. This tension isn't just going on among Catholics. I know a Lutheran friend that says her church has the traditional service with the traditional hymns and then, not sure what they call it, one that appeals to people that like the more energetic praise music. I think Methodist churches have this challenge as well. I like it all--even the Latin, especially the Latin on the Agnus Dei, and the Sanctus, and the Kryrie as well as the accomplished Christian musicians of today that are singing and praising just like David who was beloved of God and danced and sang in front of the Ark of the Covenant.