LITANIES by Nancy Gerst published on 2013-03-19T03:03:35Z LITANIES (JA 119), Jehan Alain, 1937 Nancy Gerst, organist Inscription on the cover page by Alain: Quand l’âme chrétienne ne trouve plus de mots nouveaux dans la détresse pour implorer la miséricorde de Dieu, elle répète sans cesse la même invocation avec une foi véhémente. La raison atteint sa limite. Seule la foi poursuit son ascension. (When, in its distress, the Christian soul can find no more words to implore the mercy of God, it repeats, times without end, the same fierce-faithed prayer. Reason reaches its limits and only belief can chase its flight.) A reference, I think, to what Paul said in Romans 8: the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. Groanings too deep for words. Alain understood how to say that through music. A litany is a form of prayer, often used in public worship that has a repeated phrase. Psalm 136 is perhaps the psalter prayer that established this form: Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever. 2 Give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures forever. 3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever ... Recorded March 18, 2013 at Hayes Barton UMC, Raleigh, North Carolina. Buzard Pipe Organ.