July 3, 2018


Happy July to you all!

NPM – Baltimore style!

Well, those of us in the world of pastoral music and liturgical music ministry try to use the time of summer to rest up a bit, refresh our energies, and do some study and ongoing formation as we look forward to the fall.

For many of us, the annual national convention of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM / www.npm.org) is a time to not only gather to gather to learn but to celebrate the joy of our ministry and to do so with colleagues and friends who share in the same crazy yet wonderful pastoral work. This year’s gathering is next week (July 9-13) in the wonderful city of Baltimore!

The theme for the convention this year embodies our mission as pastoral musicians, “PRAISE – GROW – SERVE,” and as always, the week will be filled with a galaxy of plenum presentations, breakout workshops, music repertoire reading sessions, skill workshops, concerts and recitals, exploring the latest from publishers, and times to renew friendships and foster new ones.

The Emmaus Center – we will be busy!

I am delighted to be on the program for several events throughout the week, and the Emmaus Center will have a very important presence during our time together. The Emmaus Center will have an exhibit booth during the week, so be sure to come by and visit us often – a place to learn more about we are up to, but also as a place for connection and great conversations!

In addition to several presentations that I will be a part of, I am very excited that I will be sharing much of the week with two important colleagues – whom many of you know. Zack Stachowski from the Baltimore area, a former “student” of mine (I really did not teach him much, to be honest, he has taught me much more), and my dear friend, sister in the Lord, and my vocal pedagogy hero, Bonnie Faber, from Minneapolis.

Zack will be presenting with me for two of the Emmaus Center showcases where we will be presenting new music from the both of us, and you will also be seeing him playing and singing at various other times throughout the week; as well as helping with some of the live-streaming of events during the week. Zack is also – together with his good friend Matt Reichert, the co-coordinator/host of the growing popular podcast program, “Open Your Hymnal.” They will have an exhibit at the convention as well, so you will be sure to find him there as well.

Many of you know Bonnie as a workshop speaker and clinician not only at NPM conventions in past years but also as the voice teacher for the annual NPM Guitar and Ensemble Institutes held each summer. Bonnie has also presented workshops all over the country for various parishes and conferences and has to be – in my humble and correct opinion – the finest voice teacher, especially for parish cantors and choir members – that I know of. You will be able to see her at the Emmaus Center showcases on Monday, and she will also be spending a lot of time at the Emmaus Center booth, so be sure to come by, introduce yourself, and perhaps explore inviting her to your community.

Sadly, Lori True will NOT be able to be at the NPM this year – but her presence will be deeply felt. We will be singing through some of her new music at the showcases on Monday, and you will be able to find out more about how to bring her and I to your community to present a workshop/retreat/concert weekend in the coming year.

New releases from my two favorite publishers!

As always, GIA will have a plethora of new music and resources for you to explore during the week, and be sure to not miss out on their plenum showcase on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m., where you will receive a free packet of the latest from their very diverse catalog.

I continue to be very excited about my new book (and accompanying CD) “I Will Bring You Home,” and I will be presenting a lab session to share more about the book and the upcoming book/concert tour that I will be taking on during the remainder of 2018, well into 2019.

I also have four new octavo editions, three of which are from the “I Will Bring You Home” collection:

“I Will Walk with You” 

“What Can I Leave Behind”

“Three Songs from “I Am Yours Today”
that represent my very first liturgical compositions from so many years ago.

“We Who Once Were Dead” is finally available in its full SATB arrangement. This piece was originally published and recorded on my “As Water to the Thirsty” collection, but it was never published with the vocal arrangement that is heard on the recording. Now – it has finally been transcribed out and is now available from GIA. Sorry, it took so long!

I am excited that, just in time for NPM, my LATEST book, “Sing as Christ Inspires Your Song: Touchstones for Pastoral Musicians”
is hot off the press and will be available from GIA at the convention. This little book is a collection of touchstones and meditations that are intended to provide some nurturing during the in-between times of serving as ministers of sung prayer. In these brief sharings, I hope to foster a renewed sense of joy and reorientation for us who serve the praise of God’s people before and after liturgical celebrations, during rehearsals, as conversation and discussion starters, and as points of reflection and challenge. It is very inexpensive and is also available in bulk quantities at a discounted price. So if you are at the convention, be sure to stop by the GIA booth and pick up a copy. One of my presentations will also include some of these reflections.

I continue to be very excited about my relationship with my primary book publisher, Clear Faith Publishing  -My partnership with them has resulted in a more recent development in my creative work and my vocation in ministry – as a speaker, retreat leader, and spiritual writer. I have several books and resources with Clear Faith, and you will be able to discover more about them when you come to the Emmaus Center exhibit booth. This wonderful effort is publishing some incredible resources in the areas of spirituality and preaching, and I strongly urge all of you to become more familiar with their tremendous work. Most of the royalties for their resources go directly to charity, in particular, organizations that advocate for the homeless. So be sure to go on their website, and check out their Facebook page as well. The Emmaus Center will be representing them at NPM next week.

My latest offering with Clear Faith Publishing, and again, just in time for NPM – is “Come, Lord Jesus Come! Advent Daily Living Reminders for Pastoral Musicians and All Who Love to Sing.” In the same vein as the “Daily Living Reminders” that many of you receive from our website, this book is for pastoral musicians of every kind – choir members, cantors, instrumentalists, directors, and members of the singing and praying assembly – providing “daily reminders” that can help mark time throughout each day of the Advent journey. Each day during the season (as well as other important times during Advent and Christmas), reflections are provided to provide a prayerful and challenging path to strengthen them in the mission as leaders of sung prayer during this season.

If you come to the Emmaus Center Showcases on Monday – you will receive a FREE copy! So do not miss out! Also, this book will be available in bulk quantities so you can order this for your music ministry members as an Advent gift this year! This will ONLY be available at the Emmaus Center booth next week, or directly from Clear Faith (a similar book for Lent is in preparation, so stay tuned).

My schedule of events during the week

I will be a busy boy next week … here is the outline of my schedule of presentations during the convention (check the convention program for the rooms where they will take place):


10:00 – 11:00 a.m. Emmaus Center Showcase 1
(with Zack Stachowski and Bonnie Faber)
Free music, other resources, and information!

1:00 – 1:45 p.m. Lab Session: David Haas’ new website: www.davidhaas.us
This will be a presentation to not only introduce the mission of the website but to hear from you all as to what you are looking for in terms of formational opportunities that the website will be able to offer: webinars, podcasts, video presentations, etc. The website is meant to be more than a typical website – it is to be a resource center for YOU. So come and help me as I plan for the future!

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Emmaus Center Showcase 2
(repeat of the earlier session, with Zack Stachowski and Bonnie Faber)
Free music, other resources, and information!


1:30 – 2:30 p.m. GIA Publications / Plenum Showcase
A whole packet of new music – do not miss!


3:00 – 4:15 p.m. Workshop: “Sing as Christ Inspires Your Song:
The Joy of Being a Pastoral Musician”
Be sure to come – I am hoping to raise some important issues for those of us in liturgical music ministry – plus I have some surprises in store. We will have some fun!


11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Lab Session: “I Will Bring You Home”
Learn more about the book and CD, and also the details for my upcoming 40 city tour during the remainder of 2018 into 2019.

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Workshop: “The Liturgical-Pastoral-Musical Judgements:
Not Just for Our Repertoire, But for Our Competencies!”
These well-known judgments which first came to us in 1972’s Music in Catholic Worship, and were strengthened in Sing to the Lord (STL), can also be a prophetic banner for us to wave with commitment, to discern and examine our competencies as pastoral musicians. We will explore these three judgments as an “examination of conscience,” as we evaluate the present, and challenge ourselves in the future.

And throughout the week – you should be able to find me at the Emmaus Center Booth and also at GIA …

Other new publications and resources hot off the press!

I want to bring to your attention four other brand new resources that you want to be sure to pick up while at the convention:

I have not been excited about a new mass setting in quite some time. Marty’s latest mass setting is now available, both in CD and Music Edition  “Mass of Reconciliation / Misa de Reconciliacion” is not only gorgeous, it is very accessible, and truly, as Marty often does, breaks new ground, in providing a version that is created independently in both English and Spanish. Marty did a lot of consulting and hard work on this – and it shows. Both English-speaking and Spanish-speaking communities will love this, and for those times when we need to come together bilingually, this provides the answer! Be sure to pick this up. From GIA.

Rob Glover has given us a true gift here. Rob has taken 70 of the most popular liturgical songs and hymns and created specific and creative bass parts for your electric and acoustic bass players. There has never been anything like this made available before – and these arrangements are what people have been crying out for, for quite some time. Plans are underway for Rob to do more and more in this series, but “Out of the Depths” is a great beginning. Every ensemble director and bass player is going to want to have this! From GIA.

Many of you know how passionate I am that we not forget our liturgical music history, especially since the explosion of Vatican II. My good friend Ken Canedo began some important work to chronicle this history in his first book a few years back, “Keep the Fire Burning.” Well – the sequel is out: “From Mountains High” – that continues the story – it is very engaging indeed. Get this book … and celebrate our history. From OCP.

This collection represents the most recent and prophetic compositional work of Rory Cooney, along with Gary Daigle and Terry Donohoo. A resource that you are going to want to have, believe me. I am not going to go through all of the songs – just be smart, and get “To You Who Bow!” From GIA.

See you there!

OK – Basta! Enough … so very much looking forward to seeing many of you who will be in Baltimore next week. Be sure to stop by the Emmaus Center booth and say hi! For those of you who will not be with us – we will miss you. Pray that it will be a week of true praising, growing and serving!

DH: 7/4/18

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