David R Haas, (born in 1957 in Bridgeport, Michigan), is an American author and composer of contemporary Catholic liturgical music. His most popular hits include "Blest Are They," "You Are Mine," "We Are Called," "We Have Been Told," "Now We Remain," "The Name of God," "Song of the Body of Christ", and "Glory to God."
Haas lives in Eagan, Minnesota, where he is the director of the Emmaus Center for Music, Prayer and Ministry. In addition to serving in parish liturgical ministry in Michigan, Iowa and Minnesota over the years, he also served as composer-in-residence at the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity in St. Paul, Minnesota; and was also campus minister and artist-in-residence at Benilde-St. Margaret's in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, where he taught in the music and theology departments. In 1999, Haas began the program MUSIC MINISTRY ALIVE!, a five-day liturgical program for youth and adult leaders that takes place on the campus of St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. In the fall of 2011, Haas began work at Cretin-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul, Minnesota. He is a member of the Campus Ministry team there and is leader of the liturgical choir that sings at prayer gatherings throughout the school year.
He has produced over forty five original collections and recordings of liturgical music (GIA Publications), and authored over 20 books on the topics of liturgy, music ministry, spirituality, religious education and youth ministry (these books are published with Franciscan Media, Liturgy Training Publications, Crossroad, GIA, and St. Mary's Press). His music is sung throughout the world and appears in many hymnals of various denominations and languages, like Spanish and French. He studied vocal music performance and conducting at Central Michigan University, and has his degree in theology and music from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. His printed and recorded collections of music are published with GIA Publications in Chicago (www.giamusic.com), with the exception of a handful of pieces that are published by OCP Publications. Years ago, Haas was a leading voice in the liturgical and musical aspects of the implementation of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, active as a team member for the North American Forum on the Catechumenate, and as a composer creating ritual music for the RCIA rites.
Haas is also known for his early collaborations with Michael Joncas and Marty Haugen, and for many years the three of them were an important influence on liturgical music in the English-speaking world, and together they traveled throughout the United States and beyond for many years, presenting concerts and workshops. They remain friends to this day. David presently continues traveling as a speaker, workshop leader, and concert performer alone, and often with his good friend and colleague, Lori True (whose music is also published by GIA). He formerly wrote a monthly column for Ministry and Liturgy magazine entitled, "Sung Prayer," and has received many awards: 2004 Pastoral Musician of the Year (from the National Association of Pastoral Musicians); Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1995 from the University of St. Thomas (together with Michael Joncas and Marty Haugen); The 2004 Outstanding Service in Ministry Award from the Crosier Fathers; and in 2011, the "Servant Among Us" award from the Servants of Jesus in Saginaw, Michigan. Nominated for a Grammy Award in 1991 for "I Shall See God" (GIA), David is active as a cantor at St. Cecilia's Parish in St. Paul.
His music in contemporary Catholic culture
Haas is one of many musicians who compose contemporary Catholic liturgical music. Following the movement that began with the St. Louis Jesuits in the 1970s and 1980s, Haas, like Marty Haugen, Michael Joncas and Dan Schutte became some of the most prolific composers of contemporary Catholic liturgical music during the period of rapid liturgical change following Vatican II. Their hymns, songs, and liturgies are published by GIA Publications in their Gather hymnals, and are also found in other hymnals used by the Catholic Church in the United States.
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- Haas, David. "From the Director". MUSIC MINISTRY ALIVE!. Retrieved February 19, 2012.