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Sacred Music News

(Last updated February 9, 2016)

  •     If you are looking for the music for "Open to me the doors of repentance," the penitential troparia sung during the Lenten Triodion after the Gospel reading in Orthros/Matins, it is in our PDF Library in Section P for Post-Gospel Hymns for the Triodion.
  •     NEW TO OUR PDF LIBRARY is "Give me this Stranger," which is sung on Holy Friday night during the Orthros/Matins of Holy Saturday, after the procession with the bier.  Thanks to Chadi Karam, it is provided to us in both Western & Byzantine notation.
  •     The Byzantine Menaion Project by Basil Kazan, which gives us the music for each month, 9 of the major feasts and many of the saints, was previously out of print, but is now available in our PDF Library.  We have January and February online, and will be getting the next months up shortly.
  •      Now available:  On the website of St. George Church, Cedar Rapids, IA, on their main page toward the bottom, there are audio files available of Fr. Elias Bitar chanting the "Lord, I have cried" from Vespers for each tone.  Go to:
  •      Professor Michael Hilko's Christmas Carols are now available, paraliturgical hymns, in the "Carols of the Nativity" section. 
  •      Mentoring Program:  If you are a chanter, a choir director, or choir member, and would like some assistance with what you are doing in church, or have any questions, please write to this department, using the contact information, and we will provide you with someone in your area to help you with your chanting, directing, or singing.
  •      Newly added to the website: Children's Music for ages Pre-School to 6 y/o; and ages 7-12 years old. We thank Elizabeth McMillan for putting all of this together for us to have, free of charge.  Music for our Teens is now available.  Go to: and click on Sacred Music. Then scroll down to the Teen Manual Section.


As many of you may know, the Kazan Byzantine Menaion Project is out of print, and has been for some time. We have been working on proofing the computerized version, and we now have September, October, November, December and January completed. If you are in need of this music, please email me, Christopher Holwey, by clicking on the email link on the right column of this website. We're still working out the specifics, but I'd like to know how many of you are in need of this. We are working hard to have the Menaion completed by next year.  Thanks.


  • If there is anything else you might need and you cannot find it here, please write to us! (See contact info in right sidebar.)


...that he beginning words of the prayer we say before communion comes from the words of the holy Apostles Peter & Paul?

"I believe, O Lord, and I confess that thou art truly the Christ, the Son of the living God, who didst come into the world to save sinners of whom I am chief."

In Matthew 16:13, when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do men say that the Son of man is?"  And they said, "Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets."  He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter replied, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."

In Paul's First Letter to Timothy 1:12, we read:  I thank him who has given me strength for this, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful by appointing me to his service, though I formerly blasphemed and persecuted and insulted him; but I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.  The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. And I am the foremost of sinners; but I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience for an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.  To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

In fact, the Divine Liturgy is filled with many references to the Scriptures, and all for our instruction, our enlightenment, and our salvation.  When we acknowledge our sinfulness, that we don't quite hit the mark, and then confess our sins, God is there to forgive us, to wash them all away, and to lead us back Home to His heavenly kingdom, even if it is at the last hour or minute of our life.  For in Luke 23:39-43, we read of the two thieves who were hung on each side of Jesus.  One of the criminals railed at him, saying, Are you not the Christ?  Save yourself and us!" But the other rebuked him, saying, "Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation?  And we indeed justly; for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong."  And he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom."  And he said to him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise."

This is from where the other part of the prayer comes:  Of thy Mystic Supper, O Son of God, accept me today as a communicant; for I will not speak of thy Mystery to thine enemies, neither will I give thee a kiss as did Judas; but like the thief will I confess thee: Remember me, O Lord, in thy Kingdom."

May it be so, for all those who come to recognize and believe that Jesus truly is the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of the living God!