The Greek phrase, “Kyrie Eleison,” (technically a Latin transliteration, for those keeping score), means, “Lord, have mercy!” It has been in use in various forms in the Western liturgy since the sixth century. The continuing use of this particular form that utilizes multiple petitions for peace with congregational responses is apparently now somewhat unique to North American Lutherans.
Also unique is the three-part vocal arrangement of this setting for leader, men, and women. With a properly prepared choir or other vocal leadership, you congregation will have no trouble learning this piece of music and will soon come to love it. The song comes from
Rock Hymnal vol.2
which featured a complete setting of the Holy Communion texts that were used in the Lutheran Book of Worship. This was Jay's first foray into writing liturgical music.