One of the ways that I am trying to help my class celebrate Easter this year is by teaching them some of the classic Easter hymns and songs, and also introducing them to some more contemporary music as well. I hope some of these songs can help you in your celebration of Easter.

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  1. Christ is Risen by Matt Maher. I love so much about this song, but especially the opening chords and the way the song builds into the bridge, when we sing “Oh, Church! Come stand in the light! Our God is not dead, he’s alive, he’s alive!”
  2. Everything Comes Alive by We Are Messengers. This song makes me want to dance every time I hear it. It’s fun and easy to sing along with as well. I love the repetition of the lyrics “I’ll be with you in heavenly places”.
  3. Alive by Natalie Grant. This song covers the entire story of Jesus in one beautiful constructed poem. I find this songs works really well with the 4 movements of the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius. I could also see using the lyrics in a lesson about the parts of the Easter vigil liturgy because it starts with creation and goes through salvation history to the resurrection.
  4. Forever by Kari Jobe. This is another good one for hearing the whole story of the Triduum. While not super easy to sing along with, the refrain is simple and powerfully sung.
  5. The Strife is O’er by Palestrina. This is a traditional Easter hymn and this recording features organ and choir. It’s a nice shift from the previous contemporary pieces and has that hymn rhythm and feel.
  6. Jesus Christ is Risen Today is another traditional Easter hymn, written in the 14th Century. I love this song, although it is often slightly out of my singing range. In Catholic celebrations of Easter, this song is almost always featured.
  7. The Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah. Although this appears to be a Christmas song making its appearance on an Easter list, the Hallelujah Chorus is actually the resurrection song of the Messiah. This is a fun one to talk to students about when they ask about why it’s played at Christmas.
  8. Glorious Day by Casting Crowns. This is another contemporary song that tells the story from the beginning of the passion to Jesus’s “Glorious Day” of resurrection. Students often know this one from the radio, and I often play it during Lent too.
  9. Because He Lives by Matt Maher. I feel like Matt Maher is great at creating choruses and bridges that I belt along with in my car. “Because he lives, I can face tomorrow! Because he lives, every fear is gone!” Amen.
  10. Easter at Ephesus is an entire Easter album by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of the Apostles. I love all of the their seasonal albums, which have a mix of hymns and chants all simply sung by the Sisters. I use each of their albums often and love exposing my students to this simple and beautiful form of prayer.

Do you have any favorite Easter songs to sing or pray with? Please let me know. I look forward to expanding my repertoire and my playlists.

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