CNA Staff, Nov 16, 2023 / 17:10 pm (CNA).
With the National Eucharistic Congress just eight months away, the U.S. bishops announced that scholarships and single-day and weekend passes will be available to… […]
Diane Mahoney’s original composition “We Do Believe, O Lord” has been selected as the 2024 National Eucharistic Congress’ official theme song. / Credit: Photo courtesy of Diane Mahoney
CNA Staff, Nov 13, 2023 / 13:30 pm (CNA).
Sheet music was made available online last week for the official hymns of the upcoming National Eucharistic Revival, which were chosen from among hundreds of entries in a contest last summer.
“The goal of this contest was to give voice to the truths of our faith in a way that only music can, inviting us to participate more deeply in the reality of the miracle present before us,” the National Eucharistic Revival announced in a Nov. 6 blog post, noting that the sheet music is free to download and use.
“Please share this with your parish’s music director and any musicians you know. We look forward to hearing these beautiful hymns in parishes throughout the country in the coming months!”
The National Eucharistic Revival is the U.S. bishops’ three-year initiative to inspire belief in and reverence for the Eucharist. The decision to embark on the initiative followed a 2019 Pew Research study that suggested only about one-third of U.S. Catholics believe the Church’s teaching that the Eucharist is truly the body and blood of Jesus Christ. As part of the revival, a National Eucharistic Congress will be held July 17–21, 2024, and is expected to draw at least 80,000 Catholics to Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
The winning hymn and theme song, which were chosen from among some 177 entries, were announced in August. Composers Diane Mahoney and Kathleen Pluth both earned a cash prize of $2,500 and the opportunity to have their compositions professionally performed and recorded in both English and Spanish.
Entries were evaluated, the organizers say, on such criteria as poetry, musicality, creativity, theological and doctrinal soundness, beauty, appropriateness for liturgical use, and expression of the mission of the National Eucharistic Revival. Father Dustin Dought, associate director of the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat of Divine Worship, served as the nonvoting chairperson of the committee of judges.
Mahoney’s original composition, “We Do Believe, O Lord,” was selected as the Congress’ official theme song and is “appropriate to be sung at Mass, adoration, and any other gathering of Catholics where music might be used,” the organizers said.
Mahoney, a longtime church organist and occasional composer, told CNA in August that she entered the contest with “very little hope” that she’d actually win but with an openness to God’s will. She said her song is based on the passage from Mark’s Gospel in which a man tells Jesus: “I do believe. Please help my unbelief.”
Mahoney said she has wanted for years to use that passage in a Communion setting because, she said, receiving the body of Christ can help people recover their belief in him.
“I wanted it to be strong, something you would sing as you’re processing to Communion,” she told CNA.
The winning entry in the hymn category was “Let the Earth Acclaim Christ Jesus,” written by Kathleen Pluth. Her prizewinning lyrics were originally set to the 19th-century tune known as “Hyfrydol,” which many churchgoers will recognize better as the tune to “Alleluia! Sing to Jesus” or “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus.”
In addition, the National Eucharistic Revival shared sheet music with the “versatile” lyrics set to the tune known as “Nettleton” — which Massgoers will recognize from the hymn “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” — and also to the famous “Ode to Joy” tune by Beethoven.
Pluth, who has a licentiate in sacred theology, told CNA in August that she sought to use her theological knowledge to write deep meaning into the lyrics that will hopefully help the hymn to stand the test of time.
“I have a theology background, so maybe this is biased, but I feel that the more doctrine, the more Scripture, the more of these kinds of basic but deep truths of our religion can be worked into hymns, the better,” Pluth said.
“And I think when we look back and see which hymns have had staying power over the centuries, they have this rich doctrine.”
Links to download the sheet music, available in English and Spanish for both compositions, can be found at the National Eucharistic Revival’s blog post.
St. Louis, Mo., Aug 7, 2023 / 07:47 am (CNA).
Diane Mahoney’s jaw dropped when the email arrived in her inbox in June. Her original composition, “We Do Believe, O Lord,” had been selected as the 2024 National Eucharistic… […]
EWTN’s Montse Alvarado, Father Mike Schmitz, and Sister Miriam James Heidland are among the featured speakers at the July 2024 National Eucharistic Congress. / EWTN/Ascension/Twitter @onegroovynun
Boston, Mass., Jul 21, 2023 / 12:52 pm (CNA).
The U.S. bishops’ National Eucharistic Revival has just announced 17 speakers to be featured at the National Eucharistic Congress at an NFL stadium next July.
The National Eucharistic Revival is the U.S. bishops’ three-year initiative to inspire belief in and reverence for the Eucharist. The decision to embark on the initiative followed a 2019 Pew Research study that suggested only about one-third of U.S. Catholics believe the Church’s teaching that the Eucharist is truly the body and blood of Jesus Christ.
As part of the revival, a National Eucharistic Congress will be held July 17–21, 2024, and is expected to draw 80,000 Catholics to Lucas Oil Stadium, home to the Indianapolis Colts.
“The whole Congress will be an experience of prayer: a liturgical act offering the Catholic Church — those in attendance in Indianapolis as well as across the country — to the Father, through the Son, and in the Holy Spirit,” the congress’ website says.
The congress will have three masters of ceremonies, including Montse Alvarado, president and chief operating officer of CNA’s parent company, EWTN News, Inc.; Sister Miriam James Heidland, host of the “Abiding Together” podcast; and Father Josh Johnson, host of the podcast “Ask Father Josh.”
The just-announced list of speakers includes Winona-Rochester Bishop Robert Barron; the Holy See’s current apostolic nuncio to the United States, Cardinal-elect Christophe Pierre; Crookston Bishop Andrew Cozzens, who heads the Eucharistic Revival; and the Archdiocese of New York’s Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Espaillat.
The speakers include the popular face of Ascension Presents and host of the hit “Bible in a Year” podcast, Father Mike Schmitz; host of EWTN programs “Icons” and “Clic con Corazon Puro,” Father Agustino Torres, CFR; and author and professor Father John Burns of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.
A number of women religious will be speaking as well, including an author and host of the “Hope Stories” podcast, Sister Josephine Garrett; Sister Bethany Madonna of the Sisters of Life, an order dedicated to pro-life ministry and eucharistic prayer; and Mother Adela Galindo, foundress of the Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary.
Additionally, several leaders among the lay faithful will be speaking, including Chris Stefanick, founder of Real Life Catholic; Catholic author and commentator Gloria Purvis; speaker, author, and podcast host Katy Prejean McGrady; author and retreat leader Julianne Stanz; speaker and evangelist Damon Owens; Scripture professor Mary Healy; and evangelist Mari Pablo.
In June, Pope Francis met with members of the U.S. bishops’ committee for the National Eucharistic Congress and said that the congress “marks a significant moment in the life of the Church in the United States.”
The Holy Father praised the committee’s “efforts to contribute to a revival of faith in, and love for, the holy Eucharist,” which he called the “source and summit of the Christian life.”
He also blessed a monstrance, a vessel used to display the eucharistic host, that will be used at the congress.