10 Contemporary Eucharistic Communion Songs

The celebration of the Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith. There are many well-known Eucharistic songs in the hymnals that we most commonly see used in schools and churches.

It may seem a bit redundant to refer to “Eucharistic Communion” songs. However, the songs we sing during the Communion Procession aren’t necessarily explicitly Eucharistic in language. It can be a song that simply reflects the readings, theme, liturgical season or occasion.

The General Instruction on the Roman Missal (GIRM) uses the term Communion chant and describes its purpose as being:

“… to express the spiritual union of the communicants by means of the unity of their voices, to show gladness of heart, and to bring out more clearly the ‘communitarian’ character of the procession to receive the Eucharist.” – GIRM, 86

Traditionally, this Communion Chant, would be the Communion Antiphon, with or without a psalm. These days, we tend to sing more contemporary songs and hymns during Communion. Choosing one with strong Eucharistic text can provide a powerful moment of “liturgical catechesis”.

We think these 10 Contemporary Eucharistic Communion Songs (listed alphabetically below) are a great addition to any repertoire. Each tells a profound truth about the Body of Christ that we receive and the body of Christ that we become in the receiving.

Listen to our Eucharistic Communion song playlist for free on Spotify here.

1. Behold the Lamb – Boyce & Stanley

Behold the Lamb is a beautifully arranged song which speaks to the heart of what we believe about the real presence of Jesus celebrated in the Eucharist. It was written as the theme song for the joint Eucharist Congress for the dioceses of Birmingham, Nottingham and Northampton in 2005.

“Behold, the greatest sacrifice made for all time
We come to be made new, to eat from the table of the Lord
Only by grace is our worthiness restored and we behold!

Behold the Lamb of God.”

PIANO sheet music is available here
Recorded on the album Age to Age II: The Journey Continues
Recorded on the album Behold the Lamb
Available on iTunes
Available on Spotify

2. Behold the Lamb – Keith & Kristyn Getty

This is a BIG Communion song, with a wonderfully rich text and a beautiful, soaring melody. It takes a bit of effort, so it’s probably a bridge too far for a typical Sunday or weekday Mass. It would certainly be well worth considering for more of an ‘occasion’. Especially if that occasion has a very particular focus on the Eucharist like Maundy Thursday or Corpus Christi.

We’ve loved this songs for years, and only recently recorded it on the album How Can We Keep From Singing? Vol. 4 (released Sept 2018).

“So we share in this bread of life
And we drink of his sacrifice
As a sign of our bonds of peace
Around the table of the King

Sheet music is available here for Piano, Orchestral, and Hymn
Recorded on the album How Can We Keep From Singing? Vol. 4

3. Bread of Life – Boyce & Stanley

This was the first song co-written by Jo Boyce and Mike Stanley when they began their song-writing partnership in 1994. It’s a well-known and much-loved favourite in many schools and parishes across the UK, but this gem of a Communion song is only just being discovered in many other places. The three verses succinctly and beautifully capture three core Eucharistic themes – Communion, the sacrifice of the Cross, and our food for the journey.

“Bread of life, truth eternal,
Broken now to set us free.

The risen Christ, His saving power
Is here in Bread and Wine for me”

PIANO sheet music is available here
String Quartet sheet music is available here
Recorded on the album Age to Age: Songs for a Pilgrim People 
Available on iTunes
Guitar Tutorial available here
Available on Spotify

 4. Eat of this Bread – Mike Stanley

This simple, Taizé-style refrain, makes for a very versatile Communion processional song. It’s length means it can be sung in procession without the need for hymnbooks. In larger gatherings, it might be a bit too short for the entirety of the procession, but it can be used as a sort of ‘transitional’ piece before the main Communion song.

Eat of this bread, this is my body
Drink from this chalice, this is my blood

Sheet music is available in the Faith Resource Book
Recorded on the album Faith

5. In the Breaking of Bread – Timothy R. Smith

The short, memorable refrain takes its text from the account of the Road to Emmaus {Luke 24:25}. The seven short verses come from the Communion Antiphons for the Sundays of Easter.  Although particularly suitable during Eastertide, or when the journey to Emmaus is featured in the Gospel, this is a great Communion processional song for any occasion (outside of Lent).  

This is another song we’ve recently recorded on the upcoming  How Can We Keep From Singing? Vol. 4 (released Sept 2018).

“In the breaking of the Bread,
We knew him, Lord Jesus
Alleluia! Alleluia!”

Sheet music is available here
Recorded on the album How Can We Keep From Singing? Vol. 4

6. Remember Me (Extended) – Dan Callow, Emily Jordan & Jo Boyce

The original refrain was written by our friends Dan Callow and Emily Jordan from OneLife Music. The verses for this extended version came later. Based on the familiar text from 1 Corinthians 11:23-29, the three verses were written by Jo Boyce. The result is an intuitively singable, scripture-based Communion Song.  Particularly suitable for Maundy Thursday, but certainly accessible enough to be used any time.

“Do this in memory of me
This is my body, given for you
Do this in memory of me
Take it and eat it, remember me, remember me.

Sheet music is available here
Recorded on the EP His Goodness Never Fails
Available on Spotify

 7. Remembrance – Matt Maher & Matt Redman

This is a fabulous co-write between two well-established Christian songwriters – One Catholic, one not. In “worship song years” some would consider this to be a bit past its use-by date… But there aren’t many explicitly Eucharistic songs written in the modern worship song style, that are also easily accessible for a congregation.  Great melody, strong lyrics and well worth having in your repertoire. We tend to play this song in D major, and it segues nicely into ‘Be Still for the Presence of the Lord’.

“Lord, we remember you
And remembrance leads us to worship
And as we worship you
Our worship leads to communion
We respond to your invitation
We remember you”

Sheet music is available here
Recorded on the Matt Maher album Alive Again (Available on iTunes)

 8. Soul of Christ – Dan Callow

The text of this reflective piece is adapted from the traditional post-Communion prayer Anima Christi. The other well-known adaptation of this text is the traditional hymn Soul of My Saviour.  It’s lovely to have a modern take on this beautiful, devotional Eucharistic prayer.

“Soul of Christ, make me holy
Body of Christ, save my soul
Blood of Christ, fill me with Your love”

Sheet music & backing Tracks are available here
Recorded on the album Let His Glory Shine (EP)
Available on iTunes
Available on Spotify

 9. Taste & See – Boyce & Stanley

This ostinato-style Communion processional song was written one Easter week during the Celebrate Conference at Ilfracombe. It debuted during one of the main conference Masses and became an instant favourite. The appeal of the song is that each of the short refrains has a catchy, ‘Gospel’ feel.  The refrains can be sung separately, or combined ad lib to create a wonderful ‘layered’ chorus of worship that is always very moving.

“Taste and see the goodness of the Lord,
I am the Living Bread, I am the New Wine
Blessed, broken, poured-out, shared for all.

Sheet music is available in Rejoice n Sing Digital Songbook
Recorded on the album Before the Lord
Available on iTunes
Available on Spotify

Some of these songs have served us well for years, others are more recent additions to our repertoire. We hope there’s something in this list that will help you as you choose those all-important Communion songs.

You can listen to our Eucharistic Communion song playlist for free on Spotify here.

We’d love to hear from you in the comments below… What songs would add to this list?

3 thoughts on “10 Contemporary Eucharistic Communion Songs

    1. A mighty fine folk hymnal classic Jo. Well-known and much-sung in many parishes still. Interestingly, the first two, original verses are from the Last Supper scene in a musical called ‘The Witness’…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.