St Louis Jesuits

An Evening with the St. Louis Jesuits

The Jesuit Center was host to the St. Louis Jesuits, the litugical musical group that has been one of the most popular liturgical music groups for decades.   The St. Louis Jesuits reunited on our campus to celebrate the Centennial of Loyola University New Orleans on Monday, November 5, 2012

St. Louis Jesuits

Accompanying them on stage was the choirs of the following area parishes:  Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic ChurchOur Lady of Perpetual Help Church (Belle Chase); St. Ann Catholic Church and National Shrine;  Ignatius Chapel Community (ICC) at Loyola University New Orleans.

The St Louis Jesuits are known for writing popular Catholic hymns such as "Be Not Afraid" and "Here I Am, Lord."   The St. Louis Jesuits popularized contemporary liturgical music in the 1970s and 1980s, and their songs are still sung around the world today.   They have also been nominated 5 times for a Grammy Award. This event is a rare occasion where they come together to sing the hymns they made popular in Catholic Churches throughout the country.  

Who are these men? 

"You may never have heard of the five men known collectively as the St. Louis Jesuits.  But if you’ve been to a Mass in the last 30 years, you have definitely sung their music.   Songs like “City of God,” “Earthen Vessels,” “Be Not Afraid,” “This Alone,” and “Lift Up Your Hearts” have become staples of contemporary liturgy and American culture.  Music of the St. Louis Jesuits was sung at President Ronald Reagan’s funeral and at President Bill Clinton’s inauguration.  A song of theirs has been heard on “The West Wing”;  Susan Sarandon sang another to death row inmate Sean Penn in “Dead Man Walking.”  The British Catholic journal The Tablet recently surveyed its readers as to the most popular hymn of all time.  The winner was “Here I Am, Lord,” a song composed by one of the St. Louis Jesuits.

"John Foley, Bob Dufford, Dan Schutte, Tim Manion and Robert 'Roc' O’Connor:  Many of the songs on their first album were recorded in a church basement or someone’s dorm room.  On some songs you can hear a refrigerator door clicking shut in the background when the room’s occupants go for a drink.   Together these five men revolutionized American Catholic liturgical music." (America magazine, May 23, 2005

The performance took place on Monday, November 5th, 2012.  A VIP reception was held before the event at 6:00 PM.                     

Other Resources on the St. Louis Jesuits:

Their MUSIC:  Eleven albums of songs  from the OCP (Oregon Catholic Press)

"Sing a New Song," Article in America magazine (May 23, 2005)

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