I’m singing liturgical music by Marty Haugen

When you think of liturgical music, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Slow? Chanting in the monastery? Boring? Not necessarily because there is Marty Haugen’s liturgical music will transform your image of monastery music into modern and contemporary flavor. It’s published by GIA.

Marty Haugen is a composer of liturgical music but not like the type we would imagine being sung in 16th century monasteries. He composes the best liturgical music because it sounds modern and is beautiful enough to make a grown man cry.

Previously, I wasn’t into this liturgical music but since I’ve encountered this stuff, I’ve grown to like it. I first encountered Haugen’s Holden Evening Prayer and Beneath the Tree of Life while attending seminary.

Recently, I’ve been learning the Holden Evening Prayer and getting ready to lead it during a Lenten service. It will be my first time singing in public and I hope I won’t flop on Wednesday. Well, it’s the Lord’s service anyway… not mine.

Do you have any experience with Marty Haugen’s music or liturgical stuff? What do you think of liturgical music vs. contemporary worship?

2 thoughts on “I’m singing liturgical music by Marty Haugen

  1. Tim, thanks for sharing your experience. I guess my experience is similar to yours but also had some of the gospel hymns in there too.

    I was surprised to learn that GIA also produces some pretty good contemporary music that similar to some of the stuff played on radio.

    Too bad we can’t have some more of our contemporary music turned into liturgy. I’ve seen it done at a more hip contemporary Catholic service.


  2. Kevin,

    Thanks for the post. Having grown up on a full diet of songs by Haugen in Catholic Church services, as well as David Haas, I would rather listen to the WOW Worship music to be honest. Thats just me though. I find myself liking a mixture of old, classic Latin Hymns and contemporary Christian music, but not much else in between.

    The main reason for this is that many of the hymnals that were produced by GIA from the 70’s-90’s were saturated with music by Marty Haugen and those like him. I am not saying his music is bad by any means, but when I was growing up in the Church it never made an impact on my worship experience. I always thought it was a little to ‘musical-like’.

    But I guess that is why we have different types of music!


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