The Bread Which We Break

This buoyant call and response song by composer and retired church musician Marilyn Haskel is an invitation to joyful unity found in the sharing of the Eucharistic meal.

Marilyn begins by speaking the rhythm of the "Hallu, hallelujah!" response in rhythm, then asks the community to echo. Once the rhythm is clear she teach the responses, using her hands to remind the group of the melodic shape. Finally, she adds the cantor part and cues the response with a rhythmic gesture and an encouraging smile. 

While it may take time to learn, a song like this can be life-giving and empowering when the community is able to practice it before worship, as well as repeat it over several weeks.

You can help support the community's participation by teaching the responses to the choir. And model shared leadership by assigning the cantor part to choir members or other song leaders.

The piece can be sung unaccompanied. A drum can be helpful, but be careful it doesn't muddy the rhythm.

Cantor: The bread which we break
Response I: Hallu, hallelujah!
Cantor: is the sharing of the body of Christ. 
Response II: Hallu, hallelujah!
We being many are one bread.
Response I: Hallu, hallelujah!
We being many are one body.
Response II: Hallu, hallelujah!
For we all share in one bread.
Response I: Hallu, hallelujah!
For we all share in one bread.
Response III: Hallu, hallelujah!

Marilyn has given faith communities permission to sing and share the song without restrictions.

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  • Paul Vasile
    responded with submitted 2020-09-30 23:43:58 -0400

Music that Makes Community
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