Archive for the ‘The United Methodist Church and Predecessors’ Category

Never Further Than Thy Cross   2 comments

Above:  The Crucifixion

Image in the Public Domain

Text (published in 1867), by Elizabeth Rundle Charles (1828-1876)

Hymn Source #1 = The Methodist Hymnal (1935), the Methodist Episcopal Church; the Methodist Episcopal Church, South; and the Methodist Protestant Church

Hymn Source #2 = Robert Guy McCutchan, Our Hymnody:  A Manual of The Methodist Hymnal, 2nd. ed. (1937)

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Never further than Thy cross,

Never higher than Thy feet;

Here earth’s precious things seem dross,

Here earth’s bitter things grow sweet.

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Gazing thus our sin we see,

Learn Thy love while gazing thus;

Sin, which laid the cross on Thee,

Love, which bore the cross for us.

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Here we learn to serve and give,

And, rejoicing, self deny;

Here we gather love to live,

Here we gather faith to die.

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Symbols of our liberty

And our service here unite;

Captives, by Thy cross set free,

Soldiers of Thy cross, we fight.

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Pressing onward as we can,

Still to this our hearts must tend;

Where our earliest hopes began,

There our last aspirings end;

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Till amid the hosts of light,

We in Thee redeemed, complete,

Through Thy cross made pure and white,

Cast our crowns before Thy feet.

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Heavenly Father, Bless Me Now   Leave a comment

Above:  Icon of the Crucifixion, by Andrei Rublev

Image in the Public Domain

Text (1871) by Alexander Clark (1834-1879)

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal (1935), the Methodist Episcopal Church; the Methodist Episcopal Church, South; and the Methodist Protestant Church

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Heav’nly Father, bless me now;

At the cross of Christ I bow;

Take my guilt and grief away,

Hear and heal me now, I pray.

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Now, O Lord, this very hour,

Send Thy grace and show Thy power;

While I rest upon Thy word,

Come, and bless me now, O Lord!

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Mercy now, O Lord, I plead

In this hour of utter need;

Turn me not away unblest,

Calm my anguish into rest.

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O Thou loving, blessed One,

Rising o’er me like the sun,

Light and life art Thou within,

Saviour, Thou, from every sin.

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Father, Whose Will is Life and Good   3 comments

Above:  World Map, 1898

Image in the Public Domain

Text (published in 1922) by Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley (1851-1920)

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal (1935), the Methodist Episcopal Church; the Methodist Episcopal Church, South; and the Methodist Protestant Church

A hymn about medical missions

The Methodist Hymnal (1935) is the only hymnal in my collection to have (1) all five stanzas and (2) the unaltered text of this hymn.

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Father, whose will is life and good

For all of mortal breath

Bind strong the bond of brotherhood

Of those who fight with death.

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Empower the hands and hearts and wills

Of friends in lands afar,

Who battle with the body’s ills,

And wage Thy holy war.

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Where’er they heal the maimed and blind,

Let love of Christ attend:

Proclaim the good Physician’s mind,

And prove the Saviour friend.

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For still His love works wondrous charms,

And, as in days of old,

He takes the wounded to His arms,

And bears them to the fold.

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O Father, look from Heaven and bless

Wheree’er Thy servants be,

Their works of pure unselfishness,

Made consecrate to Thee!

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Beneath the Forms of Outward Rite   Leave a comment

Above:  St. John’s Episcopal Church, Washington, D.C.

Image in the Public Domain

Text (published in 1928) by James Arnold Blaisdell (1867-1957), U.S. Congregationalist Minister and President of Pomona College, Claremont, California

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal/The Book of Hymns (1966), The Methodist Church

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Beneath the forms of outward rite

Thy supper, Lord, is spread

In every quiet upper room

Where fainting souls are fed.

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The bread is always consecrate

Which men divide with men;

And every act of brotherhood

Repeats thy feast again.

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The blessed cup is only passed

True memory of thee,

When life anew pours out its wine

With rich sufficiency.

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O Master, through these symbols shared,

Thine own dear self impart,

That in our daily life may flame

The passion of thy heart.

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Coronavirus/COVID-19: Prayers   2 comments

ON THE OCCASION OF A DISASTER

Compassionate God, whose Son Jesus wept at the grave of his friend Lazarus:

Draw near to us in this time of sorrow and anguish,

comfort those who mourn,

strengthen those who are weary,

encourage those in despair,

and lead us all to fullness of life;

through the same Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer,

who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

God for ever and ever.  Amen.

Readings

Job 14:7-13 or Jeremiah 31:15-20

Psalm 60 or 130 or 80:1-7 or 23

Romans 8:35-38 or Revelation 21:1-7 or Romans 8:18-25

Luke 6:20-26 or Mark 13:14-27

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 733

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IN A TIME OF NATURAL DISASTER

O God, you divided the waters of chaos at creation.

In Christ you stilled storms, raised the dead,

and vanquished demonic powers.

Tame the earthquake, wind, and fire,

and all forces that defy control or shock us by their fury.

Keep us from calling disaster your justice.

Help us, in good times and in distress,

to trust your mercy and yield to your power, this day and for ever.

Amen.

–Andy Langford, in The United Methodist Book of Worship (1992), 509

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DURING A NATIONAL CRISIS

God of ages,

in your sight nations rise and fall,

and pass through times of peril.

Now when our land is troubled,

be near to judge and save.

May leaders be led by your wisdom;

may they search your will and see it clearly.

If we have turned from your way,

help us to reverse our ways and repent.

Give us light and your your truth to guide us;

through Jesus Christ,

who is the Lord of this world, and our Savior.  Amen.

Book of Common Worship (1993), 818

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TIME OF CONFLICT, CRISIS, DISASTER

O God, where hearts are fearful and constricted, grant courage and hope.

Where anxiety is infectious and widening, grant peace and reassurance.

Where impossibilities close every door and and window, grant imagination and resistance.

Where distrust twists our thinking, grant healing and illumination.

Where spirits are daunted and weakened, grand soaring wings and strengthened dreams.

All these things we ask in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.  Amen.

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), 76

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TIME OF CIVIC MOURNING

God our creator, through whose providing care we enjoy all goodness and life,

turn our eyes to your mercy at this time of confusion and loss.

Comfort this nation as we mourn;

shine your light on those whose only companion is darkness;

and teach us so to number our days that we may apply our hearts to your wisdom;

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.  Amen.

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), 77

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https://neatnik2009.wordpress.com/2020/03/17/coronavirus-covid-19-prayers/

https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2020/03/17/coronavirus-covid-19-prayers/

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Jesus, the Calm that Fills My Breast   2 comments

Above:  Christ Calmeth the Tempest, by John Martin

Image in the Public Domain

Text by Frank Mason North (1850-1935)

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal (1905), Methodist Episcopal Church and Methodist Episcopal Church, South

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Jesus, the calm that fills my breast,

No other heart than thine can give;

This peace unstirred, this joy of rest,

None but thy loved ones can receive.

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My weary soul has found a charm

That turns to blessedness my woe;

Within the shelter of thine arm,

I rest secure from storm and foe.

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In desert wastes I feel no dread,

Fearless I walk the trackless sea;

I care not where my way is led,

Since all my life is life with thee.

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O Christ, through changeful years my Guide,

My Comforter in sorrow’s night,

My friend, when friendless–still abide,

My Lord, my Counselor, my Light.

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My time, my powers, I give to thee;

My inmost soul ’tis thine to move;

I wait for thy eternity,

I wait, in peace, in praise, in love.

O Master of the Waking World   2 comments

Above:  A World Map from 1570

Image in the Public Domain

Text (1928) by Frank Mason North (1850-1935)

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal (1935), Methodist Episcopal Church; Methodist Episcopal Church, South; and Methodist Protestant Church

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O Master of the waking world,

Who hast the nations in Thy heart–

The heart that bled and broke to send

God’s love to earth’s remotest part:

Show us anew in Calvary

The wondrous power that makes men free.

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On every side the walls are down,

The gates swing wide to every land,

The restless tribes and races feel

The pressure of Thy pierced hand;

The way is in the sea and air,

Thy world is open everywhere.

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We hear the throb of surging life,

The clank of chains, the curse of greed,

The moan of pain, the futile cries

Of superstition’s cruel creed;

The peoples hunger for Thee, Lord,

The isles are waiting for Thy word.

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Thy witness in the souls of men,

Thy Spirit’s ceaseless, brooding power,

In lands where shadows hide the light,

Await a new creative hour:

O mighty God, set us aflame

To show the glory of Thy Name.

Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise   2 comments

Above:  Clouds on the Horizon

Photographer = William Henry Jackson (1843-1942)

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-det-4a16709

Text (1867; subsequently modified) by Walter Chalmers Smith (1824-1908)

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Walter Chalmers Smith altered his text.  As best as I can determine, the original six-stanza version of the hymn was as follows:

Immortal, invisible, God only wise,

In light inaccessible hid from our eyes,

Most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,

Almighty, victorious, Thy great name we praise.

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Unresting, unhasting, silent as light,

Nor striving, nor wasting, Thou rulest in might;

Thy justice like mountains soaring above

Thy clouds which are are fountains of goodness and love.

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All live thou givest–to both great and small;

In all life livest, true life of all;

Thy blossom and flourish only are we,

To wither and perish–but nought changeth thee.

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Today and tomorrow with Thee still are now;

Nor trouble, nor sorrow, nor care, Lord, hast thou;

Nor passion doth fever, nor age can decay,

The same God for ever as on yesterday.

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Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,

Thine angels adore Thee, all veiling their sight;

But of all Thy good graces this grace, Lord, impart–

Take the veil from our faces, the veil from our heart.

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All laud we would render; O help us to see,

‘Tis only the splendor of light hideth Thee;

And now let Thy glory to our gaze unroll

Through Christ in the story, and Christ in the soul.

Sources:  

The Church Hymnary–Revised Edition (1927), The Church of Scotland, The United Free Church of Scotland, The Presbyterian Church in Ireland, The Presbyterian Church of England, The Presbyterian Church of Wales, The Presbyterian Church of Australia, The Presbyterian Church of New Zealand, and The Presbyterian Church of South Africa

Moffatt, James, ed. Handbook to The Church Hymnary–Revised Edition (1927)

Stulken, Mary Kay, and Catherine Salika.  Hymnal Companion to Worship–Third Edition (1998), Roman Catholic Church

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Since The English Hymnal (1906), however, the standard version has been four stanzas long.  This has resulted from various minor changes, the omission of the original fourth stanza, the omission of the second halves of the original fifth and sixth stanzas, and the creation of a new fourth stanza from the first halves of the original fifth and sixth stanzas.

I have italicized changes from the version above.

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Immortal, invisible, God only wise,

In light accessible hid from our eyes,

Most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,

Almighty, Victorious, Thy great name we praise.

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Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,

Nor wanting, nor wasting, Thou rulest in might;

Thy justice like mountains high soaring above

Thy clouds which are fountains of goodness and love.

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To all life Thou givest–to both great and small;

In all life Thou livest, the true life of all;

We blossom and flourish as leaves on the tree,

And wither and perish–but nought changeth Thee.

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Great Father of Glory, pure Father of Light,

Thine Angels adore Thee, all veiling their sight;

All laud we would render; O help us to see

‘Tis only the splendor of light hideth Thee.

Other Sources:

Moffatt, James, ed. Handbook to The Church Hymnary–Revised Edition (1927)

Young, Carlton R.  Companion to The United Methodist Hymnal (1993)

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Come, O Thou Traveler Unknown   1 comment

We Hope in Thee, O God!   1 comment

Above:  Evening Sun

Image in the Public Domain

Text by Marianne Hearn (1834-1909)

Hymn Source = The Methodist Hymnal (1905), Methodist Episcopal Church and Methodist Episcopal Church, South

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We hope in thee, O God!

The day wears on to night;

Thick shadows lie across our world,

In thee alone is night.

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We hope in thee, O God!

The fading time is here,

But thou abidest strong and true

Though all things disappear.

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We hope in thee, O God!

Our joys go one by one,

But lonely hearts can rest in thee,

When all beside is gone.

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We hope in thee, O God!

Hope fails us otherwise;

But since thou art in all that is,

Peace takes the hand of care.

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We hope in thee, O God!

In whom none hope in vain;

We cling to thee in love and trust,

And joy succeeds to pay.