Music from This Past Sunday

Pentecost IV – July 10

Please click on the links below to hear music from this service.

Hymn 366, Holy God, we praise thy Name (Großer Gott)

Hymn 536, Open your ears, O faithful people (Torah Song)

Michael: Hearken! Stay close to Jesus Christ

Howells: My eyes for beauty pine

My eyes for beauty pine,
My soul for Goddes grace:
No other care nor hope is mine,
To heaven I turn my face.

One splendour thence is shed
From all the stars above:
‘Tis named when God’s name is said,
‘Tis Love, ’tis heavenly Love.

And every gentle heart,
That burns with true desire,
Is lit from eyes that mirror part
Of that celestial fire.

Robert Seymour Bridges (1844-1930)

Hymn 691, My faith looks up to thee (Olivet)

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Superfluous Commentary: Words that Do Not Belong in Hymns

Consider the following, an actual hymn text by Isaac Watts, the same guy who wrote ‘When I survey the wondrous cross’ and ‘Joy to the world.”  You can sing it to the Doxology:

Blest is the man whose bowels move
And melt with pity to the poor;
Whose soul, by sympathizing love,
Feels what his fellow saints endure.

His heart contrives for their relief
More good than his own hands can do;
He, in the time of general grief,
Shall find the Lord has bowels, too.

Indeed!  The word that caught your attention, in addition to its obvious clicical definition, has an archaic meaning as “the seat of pity or the gentler emotions.”

Alimentary, my dear Watts.

Music from this Past Sunday

Pentecost III – July 3

Please click on the links below to hear music from this service.

Bach: In your mercy, Lord, you called me (Cantata 147)

‘In your mercy, Lord, you called me’ is of course not the original text to this familiar and beloved music.

For all of Robert Bridges’s prowess as a translator of hymns (Ah, Holy Jesus, O sacred head now wounded, All my hope on God is founded, and so forth) I don’t think that ‘Jesu, joy of man’s desiring’ reflects his best work:

Word of God our flesh that fashioned
with the fire of love impassioned,
striving still to Truth unknown,
soaring, dying round thy throne.

What does that mean, exactly?  And for heaven’s sake don’t let’s sing this “Truth unknown” business on a Sunday when the Gospel lesson is “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life.”

On the other hand, I am very fond of Josiah Conder’s tender and introspective text  ‘In your mercy, Lord, you called me,’ and I think it is unfortunate that it has been paired with the almost laughable unsingable tune Halton Holgate (number 706 in the 1982 hymnal).

So what we did here was to take the text we liked and the music we know and, because the number of syllables matches up, just put them together.  Bach would likely not have approved (though he is not in a position to protest), but I think that the result is reasonable successful.

arr. Whalum: Sweet home
Kristine Chaney, soprano

“Man does not live on bread alone:” nor can one, I think, subside on a steady diet of spirituals.  But this one is a particularly sweet one, and if you listen carefully to the “B” section you will hear Horatius Bonar’s familiar text, ‘I heard the voice of Jesus say’ (Hymn 692).

Hymn 718: God of our fathers, whose almighty hand (National Hymn)

God in Three Persons: Blessed Trinity

Music from Trinity Sunday – June 19

Chris Ackerman and John Crowley, trumpets;
Steve Skillman, horn; Chad Horsley; trombone;
Charles Jennings, tuba

Please click on the links below to hear music from this service.

Lisa Jennings and Bob Lauer "stepping out" together, following crucifer Gabrielle Moore

Hymn 362: Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Alimighty (Nicaea)
arr. Rich Mays

Psalm 150 (Angican Chant, Stanford)

Hymn 423: Immortal, invisible, God only wise (St. Denio)

Hobby: Te Deum

Hymn 367: Round the throne in glory seated (Rustington)

Hymn 518: Christ is made the sure Foundation (Westminster Abbey)
arr. Rich Mays