March 14, 2005

14R Unto Thy Temple, Lord, We Come

Original Title: "Unto Thy Temple, Lord, We Come," Robert Collyer (1873), DUKE STREET, L.M., John Hatton (1793), New Title: Same hymn title, rev. REH (verse 5), same hymn tune. Coll­yer was born in England and later moved to the United States; he first served Methodist churches, then Unitarian congregations. He wrote this hymn for the ded­i­ca­tion of Un­i­ty Church (Unitarian) in Chi­ca­go. He became the first pastor of that church in 1859. "I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys," Isaiah 41:18, see also Isaiah 43:20. "Where two or more are gathered in my name, there I am." Matthew 18:20. The hymn under the same name appears with verses 1, 2 and 4 in Singing the Living Tradition; it does not appear in The New Century Hymnal.

DUKE STREET (L.M.)

1. Un-to thy tem-ple, Lord, we come
with thank-ful hearts to wor-ship thee;
And pray that this may be our home
un-til we touch e-ter-ni-ty.

2. The com-mon home of rich and poor,
of bond and free, and great and small;
large as thy love for-ev-er more,
and warm and bright and good to all.

3. And dwell thou with us in this place,
thou and thy Christ, to guide and bless!
Here make the well-spring of thy grace
like foun-tains in the wil-der-ness.


4. May thy whole truth be spo-ken here;
Thy gos-pel light for-ev-er shine;
Thy per-fect love cast out all fear,
and hu-man life be-come di-vine.


5. Mo-ther-ing Spir-it gath-'ring all,
thy gen-tle arms do us em-brace;
O Womb of time, life heeds thy call;
Thy frame holds strong this ho-ly space.

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May 09, 2005

54R From Heart to Heart

Original Title: "From Heart to Heart, Creed to Creed," William Channing Gannett (1875), ST. FLAVIAN, C.M., John Day's Psalter (1562), alternative tune, ARLINGTON, C.M., Thomas Augustine Arne (1762); New Title: "From Heart to Heart," rev. REH (2005), ST. FLAVIAN, C.M. Neither Singing the Living Tradition nor The New Century Hymnal includes the hymn. Isaiah 43:19, "A way will I make in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert!" Jeremiah 31:32-33, "But this shall be the covenant . . . I will put my law within them and write it in their hearts." "I will give them a new heart, and I will put a new spirit within them," Ezekiel 11:19. Psalm 1:3, "And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water;" see also Jeremiah 17:8, Psalm 46:4. Pray for one another, so that you may be healed," James 5:16. The hymn does not appear either in Singing the Living Tradition, nor in The New Century Hymnal.

ST. FLAVIAN (C.M.)

1. From heart to heart, from faith to faith,
the hid-den riv-ers run,
and quick-en all the a-ges down,
which binds us, eve-ry-one.

2. The streams of faith, whose source is God,
whose source, the sound of prayer,
whose mead-ows are the ho-ly lives
up-spring-ing eve-ry-where.

3. And still they move, a broad-ening flood,
and fresh-er, full-er grow.
A sense as if the sea were near,
towards which the ri-vers flow.

4. O you who are the se-cret Source
that ris-es in each soul,
who are the O-cean, too, and yours,
that ev-er deep-ening roll! A-men.

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June 02, 2005

72R I Cannot Find Thee

Original Title: "I Cannot Find Thee," Eliza Scudder (1864), no changes here, LOMBARD STREET, 11.10.11.10., Frederick George Russell (1929). Scudder (1821-1896) was niece of hymnwriter Edmund Sears. Originally a Unitarian, she subsequently became an Episcopalian. The hymn is (unconscionably) not included in Singing the Living Tradition nor in The New Century Hymnal. Psalm 14:1-2, "Fools say in their hearts, 'There is no God' . . . The Lord looks down from heaven on humankind to see if there are any who . . . seek after God." Mark 9:24, "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." "If I go forward, he is not there; or backward, I cannot perceive him; on the left he hides, and I cannot behold him; I turn to the right, but I cannot see him," Job 23:8-9 (NRSV). "Return, O my soul, to your rest, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you," Psalm 116:7.

LOMBARD STREET (11.10.11.10.)

1. I can-not find thee. Still on rest-less pin-ion
my spir-it beats the void where thou dost dwell,
I wan-der lost through all thy vast do-min-ion,
and shrink be-neath thy light in-ef-fa-ble.

2. I can-not find thee. E'en when most a-dor-ing,
be-fore thy throne I bend in low-liest prayer;
Be-yond these bounds of thought my thought up-soar-ing
from far-thest quest comes back: thou art not there.


3. Yet high a-bove the lim-its of my see-ing,
and fold-ed far with-in the in-most heart,
and deep be-low the deeps of con-scious be-ing,
thy splen-dor shin-eth: there, O God, thou art.

4. I can-not lose thee. Still in thee a-bid-ing,
the end is clear, how wide so-e'er I roam;
The hand that holds the worlds my steps is guid-ing,
and I must rest at last in thee, my home.

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December 31, 2006

620R God of Queer, Transgressive Spaces

Title: "God of Queer, Transgressive Spaces," Edward Moran (2005), alt., CONVERSE, 8.7.8.7. D, C. C. Converse (1868). Moran is a Presbyterian who lives in the Fort Greene section of Brooklyn, New York; many of the lyrics of the hymns he has written can be found in the "Hymn Texts" section of the website run by The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada. Moran describes the work below as addressing "often-divisive issues of sexual diversity in the light of traditional images of Incarnation and Trinity." The lyrics have been edited lightly here. The second stanza originally read as a statement rather than a question, i.e., "Born of virgin, Word made flesh, dead and buried, still He rises!" The third stanza likewise read "Easter garments, at His order, Swaddle Her beloved One," without a question mark. Finally, the last stanza here reads "unbound God" in lieu of "Threesome God" as in Moran's original. The lyrics remain under copyright all the same, (c) Edward Moran 2006. They appear here by his kind permission. Users may wish to request permission to reproduce the hymn for local or congregational worship, or other purposes, by writing him at EMoran8688@aol.com. "Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart ... Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead," Deuteronomy 6:6, 8 (NRSV), see also Deuteronomy 11:18. "It is God's gift that all should eat and drink and take pleasure in all their toil." Ecclesiastes 3:13. "My beloved speaks and says to me: Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away," Song of Songs 2:10. "Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that he was wearing, and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt," 1 Samuel 18:3-4; see also 2 Samuel 1:26. "Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law," Romans 13:8, see also Romans 14:10, 12:4, 8:21. "This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me," 1 Corinthians 11:24, see also 1 Corinthians 12:4, 1 Corinthians 12:12, 1 Corinthians 13:13. "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb," John 20:2. "She gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger," Luke 2:7, John 1:1. "Thus says the Lord ... I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert," Isaiah 43:16, 19.

CONVERSE (ERIE) (WHAT A FRIEND)(8.7.8.7. D)

1. God of queer, trans-gress-ive spa-ces:
Lav-ish man-ger, emp-ty tomb,
wine-dark loaves and pre-cious gra-ces
bend our bar-ren lives to bloom.

2. God’s own de-vi-ance is Jes-us:
Born of vir-gin, word made flesh,
dead and bur-ied, and still ris-es?
What ab-norm-al world-li-ness!

3. Thank God for this grave dis-ord-er:
Shroud and sor-row fall un-done;
East-er gar-ments, at whose or-der,
swad-dle the be-lov-ed one?

4. Broth-ers, bind ye to each oth-er,
Sis-ters, too, and have no shame.
Sing with God our Fath-er-Moth-er,
Love that dares now speak its name.

5. With our un-bound* God con-fess-ing:
Turn all frac-ture in-to praise,
be-ne-dic-tion in-to bless-ing,
fab-u-lous and full of days.

* or 'threesome,' as in the original

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