Historically, this feast celebrates the finding of the “true cross” of Jesus by Helena, mother of the Emperor Constantine, in Jerusalem in 326. It also celebrates the return of the major part of that cross to Jerusalem in 629 by the Byzantine Emperor Heraclius, after it had been stolen by Chroses II, King of Persia, in 614. More than history, though, this feast celebrates the same mystery that we celebrate on Good Friday: In God’s hand, and by God’s design, even a cruel instrument of torture can become a source of life.

Music Suggestions

Choral Anthems

Music Suggestions

Numbers 21:4b–9. The bronze serpent that brought healing from snakebite to the people in the desert is an appropriate symbol of the cross of Jesus, as it is understood by Christians.

Psalm of the Day: Ps (77) 78

This historical psalm traces God’s dealings with Israel from the exodus to the early monarchy. In its interpretation of that history, the people’s sin is followed by divine punishment, which is followed in turn by national repentance, which is followed by God’s forgiveness and restoration.


Do Not Forget the Works (Batastini/Murray)            CBW 224

Do Not Forget the Works (Batastini/Proulx)              RS 104/WOR 1050

Do Not Forget the Works (Burns)                              PMB 755

Do Not Forget the Works of the Lord (Guimont)      GC2 946

Do Not Forget the Works of the Lord (Schiavone)   JS 1061

No Olviden las Acciones del Señor (Cortez)              FYC 221/FYC3 194


Philippians 2:6–11. The “kenosis” (“emptying”) hymn sings of Jesus’ self-giving for our salvation.


John 3:13–17. In conversation with Nicodemus, Jesus makes the connection between the “lifting up” of the Son of Man (on the cross) and the bronze serpents in the desert. Jesus’ mission is interpreted as one of salvation rather than condemnation.


Songs for the Liturgy


Adoramus Te Christe GC 396/GC2 400/G3 476/RS 542 /SS 735

Adoramus Te Domine WOR 548 /WOR4 609

All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name (1) BB-MI 724/GC 484/GP 421/GP3 364/JS 482/WC 701/LMGM 88, 89/LMGM2 343/RS 632/WOR 494/WOR4 566

*At the Name of Jesus (2) BB-MI 721,722/ CBW 427/G3 569/GP 424/GP3 366/

JS 400,483/JS3 465/OFUV 512/SPS 268/WS 621/WOR 499/WOR4 561,563

Behold, before Our Wond’ring Eyes (2,G) JS 381/JS3 349

Behold the Cross   SPS 169

Behold the Wood (1,C) CBW 379/ GC 420/GC2 437/G3 514/GP 369/GP3 298

JS 411/JS3 388/OFUV 454

By Your Cross (2) GP 346/JS 408

Calvary (G) GC 419/LMGM 38/LMGM2 296/RS 568

Christ Is Made the Sure Foundation   (G) CH 540/GC 662/GC2 642/G3 745/JS 780/JS3 /PMB 384/RS 778/SS 844/WC 783/WOR 617/WOR4 732

Crucem Tuam/O Lord, Your Cross GC 417/GC2 393/RS 571 /WOR4 464

Crux Fidelis (2,G) OIF 675/PMB 247/WC 794/WS 125,488

Down at the Cross (G) LMGM 46/LMGM2 282

Glory in the Cross (E) BB-MI 712/G3 501/JS 523/JS3 375/OFUV 439/SPS 170

*God So Loved the World (G) PMB 418/WC 808,846/WS 680

I Danced in the Morning (G) BB-MI 563/GC 708/GC2 689/G3 796/GP 395/GP3 322/JS 764/JS3 636/OFUV 670/OIF 631/PMB 366/RS 809/WC 750/WS 615 /WOR 636 /WOR4 777

I Will Sing, I Will Sing (2) GC 543/GC2 79/G3 96

In the Cross of Christ (2) GC2 436/G3 515/RS 221/SS 738

Jesus Died upon the Cross (2) JS 654/GP 720

Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross (G) LMGM 45/LMGM2 300/OIF 674/WC 798/WS 469

*Jesus, Lord (G) BB-MI 495/CBW 365/GP 594/GP3 587/JS 701/JS3 668

*Jesus the Lord (2) BB-MI 726/ CBW 432/ GC 418/G3 491/GP 370/GP3 /JS 484

JS3 467/ OFUV 509/RS 574

Keep in Mind (G) BB-MI 672/GC 674/GC2 658 /G3 646/GP 492/GP3 /JS 589 /JS3 559 OFUV 330/OIF 332,734 / PMB 36/RS  940/SS 888/WC 219,841/WS 28,684/WOR4 651

Lift High the Cross (2) BB-MI 713/ CBW 435/ GC 791/GC2 785 /G3 881/GP 444/

GP3 384/JS 522 /JS3 500/LMGM2 726/OIF 703/ PMB 393/OIF 703/RS 884/SS 974

WC 792/WS 654/WOR 704/WOR4  885

Lord Christ, When First You Came (1,G) WOR 438

*Make Us One  v 3 (2)   OIF 686/PMB 392/WC 806/WS 646

My Song Is Love Unknown (G) WOR 439/RS 572/JS 415

Now Go Forward (1,G) GC 691

Now We Remain (G) BB-MI 507/GC 694/GC2 640/G3 785/RS 813/SS 983

WC 678/WS 561/WOR4 764

O Cross of Christ (G) CBW 368/PMB 248/SS 739/WC 795

Only This I Want (G) BB-MI 498/ CBW 516/GC 695/GC2 701/G3 782/

GP 575/GP3 562/ JS 766/JS3 732

*Priestly People (G,C)  vss 8-9 (1,G) OIF 669/PMB 383/WC 761/WS 637

Sing, My Tongue, the Savior's Glory (1,G) BB-MI 146/GP3 291/JS 414/JS3 384

OFUV 450,452,460/SPS 118

Sing, My Tongue, the Song of Triumph (1,G) CBW 69/RS 573/WOR 437

Song of the Cross  SPS 167

Take Up Your Cross (2) BB-MI 710/ CBW 485/ GC 698/GC2 688,690/G3 787

GP 586/GP3 552/JS 524/JS3 501/OFUV 708/OIF 679/ PMB 238/RS 808

SS 905/WC 793/WS 467/WOR 634/WOR4 761

The Cross of Jesus (Ps,2)  GC2 396/G3 482/OIF 313/ SS 717/WC 210

The Lord Is Now Exalted (1,2,G) CBW 377

The Lord Jesus Christ (G) CBW 436

The Love of the Lord (G) RS 814/GC 702/GC2 680

*Though in the Form of God (2) CBW 687

Tree of Life (G)  CBW 373/ GC 397/GC2 401/G3 475/OIF 434/RS 541/SS 719/

WC 578/WS 480

We Acclaim the Cross of Jesus (1,G) PMB 252

We Have No Glory JS 671

We Should Glory in the Cross (G) G3 501/JS 686/WC 573

*We Should Glory in the Cross (E) Manalo JS 521

Weary of All Trumpeting (G) WOR 635

What Wondrous Love Is This (2,G) BB-MI 479/ GC 406b,627/GC2 614/G3 642

GP 642/GP3 668/JS 755/JS3 719/LMGM2 500/ OFUV 693/OIF 738

PMB 253/RS 749 /SS 853/WC 757 /WS 470 /WOR 600 /WOR4

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross (G) BB-MI 144/ CBW 382/GP3 302/JS 417

JS3 387/OFUV 465/OIF 678/ PMB 249/RS /WC 796/WS 485/WOR 433/WOR4 641

Wherever He Leads, I'll Go (1)  LMGM 50/RS 819/WOR4 938

*Wood of the Cross (Ps) BB-MI 148/GP3 296/JS 407

Choral Anthems

Title of Anthem, Voicing & Instrumentation Composer/arranger/editor Publisher & edition #
All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name, Diadem  (2 part Mixed Voices, Organ, opt. Trumpet)  Johnson, Dennis R.  GIA (G-5887)  2
At the Name of Jesus (SA, Organ)  Willan, Healey  Concordia (97-7160)  2
At the Name of Jesus (SATB, Organ)  Langlais, Jean  Hinshaw (HMC 423)  2
Christ Became Obedient (SATB, opt. Keyboard/Organ, Latin only)  Anerio, Felice  Alexander Broude (ABC 32) 2
Christ Became Obedient (SATB, opt. Keyboard/Organ, Latin/English)  Anerio, Felice  GIA (G-1967)  2
Christ Humbled Himself in “We Praise Thee, Vol. 1 (2 part, Organ)  Willan, Healey  Concordia  2
Christ Jesus Lord, Thy Name Adored in “Three German Motets”  (SATB, English/German)  Praetorius, M/arr. Guentner, Francis  Augsburg (11-10089)  2
Christus factus est (SAB)  Durante, Francesko  Arista (AE 275)  2
Christus factus est (SATB)  Zingarelli, Miccolo/ed. Kaplan, A.  Lawson-Gould (51428)  2
Christus factus est (SATB, Latin only)  Bruckner, Anton   Arista (AE-157)  2
Christus factus est (SATB, opt. Keyboard/Organ, Latin only)  ed. by Barlow, Stephen   Walton (2161)  2
Christus factus est (SATB, opt. Keyboard/Organ, Latin.English)  ed. by Klein, Maynard  G. Schirmer  2
Christus factus est (SATB, opt. Keyboard/Organ, Latin.English)  Bruckner, Anton  Summy Birchard (5249)  2
Christus factus est in “Geistlich Gesang Für Männerchor” (TTBB)  Palestrina, G. P.  Oratoriumsverlag (#na)  2
Come, Follow Me (SATB, Keyboard, opt. Flute)  Thompson, R. Paul  Hinshaw Music (HMC 1391)  E
Crucifixus  Bach, J. S./ ed. Churchill  Bourne Co. (750)  2
Crucifixus from “Mass in B Minor” (SATB, Keyboard/Organ)  Bach, J. S.  Bourne Co. (750)  2
For Our Sake (SATB, Keyboard)  Hughes, S. M., Howard L.  World Library (8525)  2
Glory in the Cross (SATB, Keyboard, opt. Guitar)  Soper, Scott  GIA (G-4617)  E
Glory of Christ, The (SATB, Organ, Handbells, Brass)  Scott, K. Lee  Concordia (CPH 98-2982)  E
In nomine Jesu (SATB, Latin/English)  Handl, Jacob/Herter, J.  GIA (G-1860)  2
In nomine Jesu (TTBB) Gallus, Jacob/ed. Collins, W.  Lawson-Gould (51203)  2
In nominee Jesu (SATB)  Gallus, Jacob  Concordia (98-1051)  2
Jesus Christ Is the Lord (SATB)  Gouzes, OP, André  GIA (G4981)  2
Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence, Picardy (SATB, Handbells)  Ferguson, John  Augsburg (0800646681) 2
Let This Mind Be in You (SATB, Organ)  Butler, Eugene  Carl Fischer (CM 8258)  2
Lift High the Cross, CRUCIFER   (2 part mixed or SATB, Organ, opt. Trumpet)  arr. Busarow, Donald  Augsburg (0800645898)  E
Lift High the Cross, CRUCIFER   (SATB, Organ, Brass, Timpani, opt Handbells)  arr. Burkhardt, Michael  MorningStar (MSM 60-6001) E
Lift High the Cross, CRUCIFER  (SATB, Organ, Brass Sextet, Timpani)  arr. Hillert, Richard  GIA (G-2630)  E
Lift High the Cross, CRUCIFER (SAB, Organ, opt. Brass)  arr. Schalk, Carl  Concordia (98-2468)  E
Lord Jesus Christ Humbled Himself (SATB)  Messaus, Guilleimus/ed. Proulx, R.  GIA (G-3791)  2
May We Never Boast (SATB, Piano, 2 Flutes, opt. Guitar) Connolly, Michael  GIA (G-4032) E
One with God before Creation (SATB, Keyboard)  Sensmeier, Randall  GIA (G-4897)  2
Vexllia Regis Bruckner CPDL G
We Adore You, O Christ (SATB)  Proulx, Richard  Paraclete (PPM 9836)  2