Discerning Songs of Love and Service for the New Year

by Sister Julie Ann on January 1, 2017

St. Francis of Assisi chose every day to live Gospel values. This January 2017 Franciscan Sisters stream Laura Marie’s Be Love and Dan Duet’s Called to Serve inspiring us to catch the poor man’s spirit of trying to be as much like Christ as he could.  As we seek our own personal conversations and strive for unity and reconciliation in this new year, may we be instruments of God’s peace, love and joy. Pope Francis emphatically reaffirms this vision in his 50th World Day of Peace Message: “Violence profanes the name of God. Let us never tire of repeating: The name of God cannot be used to justify violence. Peace alone is holy. Peace alone is holy, not war.”

Be Love by Laura Marielauraguitar1

Since I was a young girl, the prayer of St. Francis has always deeply moved me. There is such beautiful humility in it. And, it so perfectly acknowledges it’s up to us, that we are the hands and feet. Our purpose is to be of service and it is what we do for each other that matters. Whenever I am lost or in doubt, the prayer reminds me, instructs me as to how I should respond and who I should be in this world. To ‘be love’  is to hold the presence of love in this world and I believe the world desperately needs that from all of us.

-Laura Marie




Buy links:

Songs can be downloaded/purchased on iTunes, Bandcamp and lauramariemusic.com

Called to Serve by Dan Duet dan-duet

In 1995-ish I had been commissioned to write a song for a beloved Monsignor here in the Archdiocese of San Antonio who was celebrating his 50th Jubilee and retiring. Shortly after I performed this song (“In Case You Didn’t Know”) during his Jubilee Mass, another priest approached me and, somewhat joking and somewhat serious, reminded me that the next year would be his 40th Jubilee and asked if I would write a song for him. This priest is from Ireland and so I wrote “Called to Serve” from the point of view of someone who is willing to follow God’s Will no matter where it would lead them. For this priest that journey led him to another country in a far-away land called America. I sang this song at both his 40th Jubilee Mass and at his retirement ceremony.

-Dan Duet


Dan Dúet – Two-Twelve Ministries

www.danduet.com and dan@danduet.com

Please note: Anyone who writes to me can receive the song for free as I’d send them a copy via e-mail.

26 thoughts on “Discerning Songs of Love and Service for the New Year”

  1. Postulant Megan says:

    Laura Marie’s voice is so beautiful in this song.The lyrics are a calming, and yet profound call to action for all of us walking in our vocations.

  2. Sister Kathleen says:

    Dan Duet’s song “Called to Serve” speaks so clearly of our life, but the one line that kept resonating was “called to be a voice in the wind”. At first listen that sounds rather futile, but the more I thought about it, the more powerful the phrase became. The wind is, for me, a sign of the power of the Holy Spirit. If my voice is in that wind, in harmony with the Spirit, then I’m in the Lord’s way. When I try to silence the world so that my voice, my own personal voice is the sound that is heard, then that’s a step down the wrong path. I want to be that voice in the wind each day of 2017. Thanks for the powerful thoughts, Dan!

  3. Sister Pamela Catherine says:

    There is a wonderful quote by Thomas Merton that seems to fit the meaning behind this song so well. A song that encompasses the prayers of both St. Francis and St. Mother Theresa of Calcutta. Thomas Merton says, “To say that I am made in the image of God is to say that love is the reason for my existence, for God is Love. Love is my true identity. Selflessness is my true self. Love is my true character. Love is my name.” All that we do or say or think should be for the love of God. It is being His hands and feet, living out the image and likeness we are made in…total LOVE. How do we come to live this call of total Love…by spending time with Love Himself, coming into His presence, allowing Him to teach and guide and then having the courage to be Love to others.

  4. Sister Marsaia says:

    I happened to be sitting by a large picture of the Good Shepherd when I first listened to this song. The effect was perfect, as the words are a direct address from the Shepherd to the heart of each one of us. What a great voice you have, Dan, and so clear that we can get every word on a first hearing! The Lord’s peaceful, strengthening, grace “rides on” the strains your song. I would love to see “Called to Serve” used at all kinds of gatherings for parishioners, young people and catechists. Thank you and blessings on all your endeavors.

  5. Sister Marcolette says:

    “Called to Serve” is not only a wonderful tribute to Monsignor Liam Brosnan on the occasion of his 40 Jubilee, but a testimony to all people who’ve responded to the call to empower others – whether in Church ministry or the civic community. Here in Manitowoc, the mayor recognizes /The Volunteer of the Year. Last year is was Tom Drill, an elderly, witty, unassuming individual who supports and works at a wide variety of events. When I heard him speak at the City Council meeting, his passion for building a better community energized the group. To give service, one needs to believe in the goodness of others – something I’m sure Monsignor Brosnan did.

  6. Postulant Colleen says:

    Allow the word of God to reach our ears to bring us back to life. As a nurse, it reminded me of the times I saw patients defibrillated for an abnormal heart rhythm. Without this intervention, it could have been fatal. Much like closing ourselves off to Christ. The other message was that no matter what we experience in life, whether it be injury, poverty, despair or darkness, BE LOVE!!! Wickedness, hopelessness, sadness and hatred, BE LOVE!!! Live as CHRIST.

  7. Sister Carla says:

    It’s amazing how many artists sing the Prayer of St. Francis. This is just what we need to be. God is love and we have to be the ones who share him with others. This makes a good New Year’s resolution.

  8. Sister Pamela Catherine says:

    This song has adventure written all over it!! God’s call is one beautiful adventure, full of JOY, PEACE, HOPE and LOVE! This adventure, this journey is one based on trust as the song writer states. It is a trust that continues to deepen with every step forward. Love leads and guides, we must simply trust and allow Him to act through us, to become His instruments! We then soon find others caught up in this adventure allowing Love to lead the way!!

  9. Postulant Colleen says:

    Dan Duet “Called to serve” spoke of the voice we hear in the wind. To carry the Cross, Word and people to live with Him. He calls us by name to serve, lead and live what he believes. He spoke of the journey and taking one tiny step which holds the key. Don’t look back, just live a day at a time, year after year.

  10. Postulant Megan says:

    Called to Serve: This song’s lyrics are reassuring and affirming. My favorite lines were “the journey holds the key, so don’t look back” and the refrain “Called to serve. Called to lead. Called to live what you believe.”

  11. Sister Carla says:

    The song Called to Serve has a very basic message. I have to know God’s love for me before I can place my trust in him and his promise to lead me on my journey through life. This trust will keep me going out to serve even though I can’t see a clear path. Sometimes we make the path as we move forward. Our world needs our voices of hope and peace!

  12. Sister Marcolette says:

    Laura, I think the whole world needs to hear “Be Love.” It’s so easy to become cynical in a world where anxiety, apathy, consumerism, and individualism can seem overwhelming. I find the lyrics empowering because they challenge one to transcend darkness by searching for real meaning in life. In a world beset with complexities, it’s refreshing to hear a message that tis so simple, yet not at all simplistic. To “BE Love,” implies that one has assumed an overarching attitude as well as a determination to act. One can hardly lose heart after listening to “Be Love.”

  13. Sister Marsaia says:

    “Be Love”
    The musical elements of this song- the finger picking at the beginning set a sensitive introduction to the words of address to all those who are suffering, all those whose faces and tears we see every day, up-close or in media spots; the lyrics’ quick “listings” of the daily evils and “distresses” that people experience; the unusual but surprisingly very-musically-pleasing intervals in the melody; the crystal clear and caring voice that delivers a “solution” to the troubles of our world: All of these make this song poignantly appealing.

    This new song-gem gives us a creative twist on the “Prayer of St. Francis”. Laura’s “new prayer”, Let me “be love” mirrors the excitement of St. Therese of Liseux’s joyful words when she found in St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, that love is everything. Therese, who had been looking for her mission in life, cried out “I will be love in the heart of the Church.” Laura Marie’s song invites us, her listeners, to pray to become love in the lives of those around them. Great New Year’s resolution! Thanks!

  14. Sister Hannah says:

    Saint John of the Cross had a wonderful quote, “Where there is no love, put love… and you will find love.” Laura’s song, “Be Love” reminds me of that profound call all people have to do something profoundly startling; putting love in situations where we see the opposite.

  15. Sister Hannah says:

    As I listened to, “Called to Serve” I thought of all the saints of the past who heard God calling them to serve and how their response lead them on a profound journey of trust. We are called to serve and to trust our Gracious God in each day’s joys and sufferings as the saints did so as to become modern day saints. “Called to Serve” inspires us to become those courageous witness of service! Thank you!

  16. S.M. says:

    “Where there is injury, poverty, dying and despair let me-be love.” The touches my heart because everyone has something happen that’s so bad they forget that they are loved.

  17. K.S. says:

    It shows me to be the person to change any evil outcome and to help those in need. It shows me to be light. The world needs to have people become light, too.

  18. Angelyssa says:

    Music inspires us in general. There are good influences and bad influences. Be Love is most definitely a positive influence. This song sings of the ways we are to show love when there are times of despair. It is a reminder to live everyday with love for yourself and others.

  19. Anthony says:

    This music inspires me to be closer to God as I listen to it. Music fills me with happiness/hope and I believe that’s the feeling that God wants to see us feeling.

  20. Daniel says:

    The songs motivate us to do good in life and love each other.

  21. C.L. says:

    The part where she incorporates St. Francis of Assisi’s prayer touches my heart. Since that is my favorite prayer, it calls my attention. I think that those few lines have a big say in how we should live out our lives.

  22. S.C. says:

    The songs inspire me to be closer to God because he will always be there with me. No matter the time. Being with him, I will be able to overcome all bad things around me and through him be loving and giving.

  23. A.E. says:

    Actually try to be someone, and give hands and not destruction!

  24. J. says:

    This inspires me to be closer to God by showing love.

  25. G.S. says:

    The phrase ‘be love’ says it all. This touches my heart!

  26. DV says:

    The unique message each song gives motivates me to have a stronger relationship with God.

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