Time to sing hymns

 

Do you enjoy listening to and singing hymns?

To listen to a different hymn each day click here (links to external site in a new window).

To search for and listen to a specific hymn try the Hymn Site (external site opens in new window).

Why do we sing Hymns?

Because they and the more modern worship songs can sometimes express in their words sentiments that strike at the  very heart of our human emotions.

We here at Campsea Ashe sing in Church, sometimes well  if we have an organist, sometimes less well;  but no less enthusiastically unaccompanied when we don’t.  I might reduce the number of verses so as not to challenge the less vocal members of the congregation, and sometimes reduce the number of them from the traditional 4, one at the start, one to finish  with  which is often a nice rousing, or jolly one, one sandwiched between the first and second scripture readings and one during which the offertory is collected.  We sing because it adds another dimension to our worship of Almighty God, and they have many other functions too.  They are the punctuation points in an act of worship, allowing  people to stand  from periods of sitting on hard pew.  

Also they are part of our Anglican heritage, and if you are of a certain age, they can often take you straight back to your childhood.  Which is why for weddings it’s normal to sing The Lords is my Shepherd, to the tune Crimond, and let’s not forget Amazing Grace, and  All things Bright and Beautiful, to both tunes, for a wedding.  Some hymns then,  have the capacity to stay with you for life,

Hymn singing makes you think, and allows you to offer worship to Almighty God in words that you could never express yourself.  And good hymns endure for ever, we have in our repertoire here everything from Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire by John Cosins (1594- 1672) and I wish I were a butterfly from 1990’s and everything in between.

Hymn singing, then, is good  for the soul, it lifts your spirits, probably why Songs of Praise is still on our TVs after 50 years.  This church likes hymns, has a great organ for a village church and we sometimes have short informal services of Hymns and Prayers, or a full blown Songs of Praise  with 5 or 6 hymns.  And we do this  occasionally because we’ve discovered that they appeal to people who don’t attend church regularly, if at all, as it may be that  through singing that people can be encouraged  to ‘come and see’ what we do on Sunday in church. 

My favourite hymn, at the moment, is Be still my soul, to the tune Finlandia by Sibelius.  A hymn with a beautiful tune, a haunting melody that won’t leave your brain when you’ve finished singing.  I use it sometimes as a meditational aid,  that you sing  to yourself or out loud, depending on if you like your voice or not. 

And if there’s no one to hear you, but God, why not get the tune off the Net Hymnal site and give it a go - click here.

Be still, my soul, the Lord is at your side

bear patiently the cross of grief and shame

Leave to your God to order and provide

in ev’ry change He faithful will remain.

Be sill my soul, your best, your heavenly friend,

through stormy ways, leads to a  joyful end.

 

Be still, my soul, your God will undertake

to guide the future as he has the past

Your hope, your confidence let nothing shake,

all now mysterious, shall be clear at last

Be still, my soul: the tempests still obey

His voice who ruled them once on Galilee.

 

Be still,  my soul, the hour is hastening on

when we shall be forever with the Lord,

when disappointment , grief , and fear are gone,

sorrow forgotten, love’s pure joy restored.

Be still, my soul, when change and tears are past,

all safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

 Rev Deirdre West