Singing nun Janet Mead dies at 84

Sister Janet Mead held rock masses regularly in St Francis Xavier Cathedral in Adelaide.
Sister Janet Mead held rock masses regularly in St Francis Xavier Cathedral in Adelaide.

Sister Janet Mead, a South Australian nun who found global fame with a rock'n'roll version of The Lord's Prayer, has died at age 84.

She rose to fame in Australia after her Rock Masses, recorded at Adelaide's St Francis Xavier Cathedral, came to the attention of Festival Records.

Her 1974 version of The Lord's Prayer shot up the charts, and went on to sell three million copies and be distributed in 31 countries.

The song peaked at number three on the Australian singles chart, and number four on the Billboard Hot 100.

Sister Janet donated all the earnings from the hit to charity.

She entered the convent in 1955, after going to St Aloysius College (SAC), a Catholic school in Adelaide.

She also attended the Adelaide Conservatorium and studied piano.

She produced multiple plays, liturgies and more than twenty musicals, as well as running the SAC orchestra for many years.

In 2004 she was recognised for her services to Australian Christian Music and was given the Yamaha Golden Gospel Award.

The Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide confirmed that Sister Janet died on Wednesday.

Australian Associated Press