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Brightest and Best

Author:  Fr. George William Rutler

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From The Cover
Fr. George Rutler

This collection of great hymns from the early Patristic period to the twentieth century offers inspiring accounts of their authors, composers and events connected to these hymns, as well as their significance for theology and music. It comes at a time of musical impoverishment in worship and general liturgical chaos, but also a time of sober reflection and the widespread desire to recover a rich musical legacy.

This book is unique as a Catholic study of hymnody. This collection introduces Catholics to many forgotten works of their own tradition, as well as many great hymns still sung today. It also treats sacred song from the Byzantine and Protestant cultures which are suitable for Catholic doxology. Most of all, it will be an inspiration for the spiritual life since, as St. Augustine said, "He who sings, prays twice."

"Father Rutler is known far and wide for his ability to turn a phrase and give an incisive comment. Here he considers nearly 100 hymns of fine artistic and theological quality, giving interesting information about the texts, the music and the composers."
-Rev. Msgr. Richard Schuler, Editor, Sacred Music

"This is a classy book with the hymns and the marvelous scholarly annotations by the inimitable Father Rutler. Indispensable to every library."
-William F. Buckley

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