Monday, April 20, 2015

Songs for Mother's Day / Mothering Sunday (10 May 2015, in most countries)

Songs about mothers
*WoV692 / ELW419 / GtG324 / RS885 For all the faithful women (Steumpfle) Great words of the faithfulness of women, including Hannah, Mary, Mary Magdalene, Deborah and Miriam. Sung to a very familiar tune (AURELIA). You could choose just the verses you want so it's not too long, (but all the verses are good). Some words are a bit odd (like the bit about saving "our race" could unfortunately be easily misconstrued). Lyrics
*SFFS 2189 A mother lined a basket (Keithahn) Quite a remarkable song about the nurture mothers provide and the risks they take in letting children go. "A mother lined a basket to keep her baby dry, then rocked him on a river lest he awake and cry, She let a princess name him, her son, that he might live, God's people had a leader, she had such hope to give". Could be sung to other tunes such as THORNBURY. Lyrics.
*NCH426 O God whose steadfast love (Haddix) A song about family and motherhood. The tune is a very familiar sounding hymn tune (RHOSYMEDRE).  
A&M137 / G(II)646 / GC892 / GC(II)871 / G(3)983 / SP42 God of Eve and God of Mary (Farrell) A lovely gentle song that celebrates Mary, Eve, and all who play mothering roles.

God as Mother 
*VU270 Dear Mother God your wings are warm (Wootton) Good images of God as mother; the tune is not known and will need to be taught. Could also be sung to PERFECT LOVE, I think.  
*VU484 God the all-holy Maker and Mother (Wren) A Trinitarian song, with the first verse focussed on God as Mother. Sung to the familiar tune BUNESSAN.
*AoV1-085 / GtG474 / Lau453 / PfAS131E  Like a child rests in its mother's arms (Walker) A very beautiful and simple refrain; works well on its own.
*VU280 Mother and God (Winter) A short song, suitable for before the intercessions or communion. Beautiful words; some may find the breastfeeding God image a little challenging. Simple tune. Lyrics.
Tune In II Mother Our God (Brown) A plain-speaking song that celebrates the image of God as mother, and questions why we have found it hard.
*NCH467 / CH117 / VU320 / WoV769 / ELW735 / SFFS 2050 / HPP242 / GtG007 / Cha083 Mothering God you gave me birth (Janzen) Lovely words to the well known tune MARYTON. Feminine trinitarian imagery. I like the tune MOTHER JULIAN (CH4 117(I)) best. Lyrics (scroll down)

God as Grandmother 
*Online Resource Grandmother God / Younger than a youth (Wren) This is a great two part song, with a simple bass part and then a second part for the rest of the congregation. Great imagery of strong older women. Sheet music and lyrics

Songs, Hymns and Music for Easter 5B (3 May 2015)

Acts 8:26-40  
Philip and the conversion and baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch. The inclusion of outsiders.
You might like to use a song about baptism.
*CH198 / MV001 / HPP550 / A&M365 / GtG301 / GC753 / GC(II)741 / G(3)850 / SP176 / URW058/ Lau458 Let Us Build a House / All are welcome (Haugen / TWO OAKS) This song has wonderful lyrics of hope for what a Christian community can be like, and a chorus that joyfully says “All are welcome, all are welcome, all are welcome in this place”. Sheet music sample. Sound sample. 
*MV 145 / CP418 / SP&P123 Draw the circle wide (Light) A great song about welcoming all people. Chorus is “Draw the circle wide, draw it wider still. Let this be our song, no-one stands alone, standing side by side, draw the circle wide”. Lyrics
*TiS 691 Faith will not grow from words alone Excellent strong words of a questioning faith to a familiar hymn tune. I think it's important to note that the Ethiopian, while clearly a questioning sort of fellow, needed the guidance of another to gain understanding.
*ATFG561 / Tune In: Part of a fam'ly interconnected / Community (Brown) A song about being welcomed and how to work together as part of a community. "Part of a family interconnected, this is community; Welcoming strangers, visiting neighbours, this gives us dignity". Very singable song about building community. Sound sample, lyrics and songbook. Good for kids
AoV1-074 Come To The Water (Andersen) I love the words to this and it picks up the theme of baptism. It is not entirely inclusive. You may also have favourites within your congregation that relate to baptism that may be broadly applicable and good to ponder with this reading. Lyrics and sound sample.

Psalm 22:25-31 
God’s constant care. Everyone will worship God. 
Most settings of Psalm 22 focus on the first part of the Psalm (My God, my God, why have you abandoned me). Here are some that pick up the latter part of the Psalm. 
*NCH007 All people that on earth do dwell (OLD 100TH). Almost every hymnal has quite masculine words for this classic hymn. I thoroughly recommend you look at the NCH adaptation. It is joyous and very lovely. "All people that on earth do dwell, sing out your faith with cheerful voice; Delight in God whose praise you tell, whose presence calls you to rejoice".
*PfAS022C What wondrous love is this (Mead) Refrains only, to be sung with a 2 reader version of the Psalm.
*AoV1-073 / G(II)467 / GC657 I Will Not Die before I've lived to see that land (Conry) I really quite like this one. The verses may be best sung by a small group, but a congregation who likes singing will do fine with it. Some funny he / shes about God in there (in AoV), which kind of work. Chorus is “For your right hand has delivered us from death. You have regarded our tears, you who are goodness and grace”. Lyrics. Clunky sound sample.
*TiS 727 / SiS361 / ATE 208 / CH121 / AA70 / PfAS022F In the presence of your people (Chambers) A good Yiddish tune - lots of fun for kids and adults. Good to get fast and dance around on this one. Good for kids. Or you could try:*VU745 In the presence of your people (Chambers - refrain only) Refrain only for singing with a reading of this Psalm.
Online resource All the Ends of the Earth Shall Turn to you, O God (Harding) A very simple one-liner from Bruce Harding, suitable for using with a reading of the Psalm, or intercessions. Sheet music available for purchase here.
Linnea Good So while I live my soul is yours A very simple refrain or chant.

*Tune In: Like the sun upon my skin / God’s Mercy A beautiful ballad about identifying God's mercy in the beauty of creation. Lyrics, sound sample and songbook.
*Tune In: The God that I know. A ballad drawing on God’s strength and comfort; not easy if unfamiliar. Lyrics and sample available here.
*Tune In: Shepherd of the night (Loukes) "Have you ever felt the velvet night wrap you in her warmth". A lovely song with a theme of God’s protection. This is tricky for a congregation, so you might want to ask the musicians to play this. Lyrics, sound sample and songbook.
VU618 / CP558 God when I stand (O'Driscoll) Good words; the tune will probably need to be taught, or at least played through before the congregation sings it. The 4th verse focuses on Thomas, but don't omit it, or you won't have the happy ending.

1 John 4:7-21
God is love. Love each other.
 
*MV31 / Linnea Good Pure love A simple two-part chant that picks up the Psalmist’s idea of the purity of God’s law “Pure love, pure truth, pure justice, God”. Would be great if you can teach it to some of the congregation before worship starts. Good for kids.
*TiS 217 / AHB 148 / NCH43 / CH519 / UMH384 / VU333 / A&M721 / LBW315 / ELW631 / A&M721 / GA463 / HPP48 / GtG366 / PH376 / GC622 / GC(II)613 / G(3)641 / CP485/6 / CP(E) 516 / W&R358 / Cha517 / Srce457 / URW100 / 82Hml-657 / Lau801 Love divine all loves excelling (Wesley) Can't possibly sing this song too often! A beautiful classic song and most hymnals use a very inclusive version of this hymn, even the AHB! "Joy of heaven" *sigh*, so lovely! Lyrics and sound sample. You may also like to give Rend Collective Experiment's version a listen (hard to sing, but nice for listening).
*TiS 697 All the sleepy should have a place to sleep (Edwards / PITNEY) Great chorus "Make love happen by God's grace and by God's power. Let God move you on this day and in this hour. New creations will then blossom like a flower for together we can be the hands of God".
*TiS 693 / AoV1-031 / GA212 Come as you are that's how I want you (Browne) This song is beautiful, gentle, simple, and very well known. Lyrics (search for "come as you are"). Slow and mushy sound sample. A good song to start the service. 

*AoV2-070 / ATW 496 / MV090 / StJ / G(3)719 Don't be afraid (Bell) Excellent. I love this song of reassurance. "Don't be afraid, my love is stronger. My love is stronger than your fear". This song can be used as a response to intercessions. Good for kids.
*GtB God is love and love is giving (Langmead) A simple kids' song about God's love. A round. Good for kids. Sound sample.
*CH115 / MV089 / Iona (Love from Below) Love is the touch of intangible joy (Robertson / Bell) words of different kinds of love – deep friendship, romantic love (Love is the lilt in a lingering voice), and the love of God. Each verse ends with "God is where love is, for love is of God". Tune is simple enough for a congregation to sing first go, and it has gorgeous chords. Lyrics (scroll).
AoVK-44 God loves you and I love you (Trad) Good old Sunday School song. AoV version is not too tacky. Good for kids.
*Iona (M&G) / ATAR609 / CH359 / MV033 / GtG137 / ZSS54 / StJ / ELW253 / GA293 / SFFS 2085 / G(II)276 / GC370 / GC(II)364 / G(3)429 / CP368 / W&R402 He came down that we may have love/ Jesus came bringing us hope (Traditional Cameroon) A lovely simple song - you can make up words and have a lot of fun with this if you also use some drums. For Brunswick this year, this will be a nice reminder of Advent, when we sang this every week. Scottish sound sample. Good for kids.
*TiS 640 / AHB 561 / ATE 310 / NCH498 / UMH432 / VU593 / WoV765 / ELW708 / HPP446 / GtG203 / PH367 / G(II)296 / GC409 / GC(II)429 / G(3)505 / CP504 / W&R273 / Cha600 / URW116 / 82Hml-602 / Lau241 Jesu Jesu fill us with your love / Kneels at the feet of his friends (Colvin & people of Ghana) Lyrics. Good for kids 
*TiS 152 / NCH4 / UMH89 / VU232 / LBW551 / ELW836 / HPP22 / GtG611 / PH464 / GC529 / GC(II)520 / G(3)614 / CP425 / W&R59 / Cha002 / URW065 / 82Hml-376 Joyful joyful we adore thee Note that this hymn is not always very inclusive. I prefer more modern translations (e.g. TiS, VU, NCH, GC(II) ). Older version lyrics and tune sample.
*Taizé / CH801 / MV170 / StJ / GtG205 / WoV665 / ELW642 / SFFS 2179 / GC408 / GC(II)430 / G(3)500 / CP553 / W&R399 / Cha523 / URW394 / Lau244b Live in charity / Ubi Caritas (Taize) Usually sung in Latin, but can also be sung just as beautifully as "Live in charity and steadfast love, live in charity; God will dwell with you." Sheet music and sound samples for practice. Good for kids. 

John 15:1-8
Christ as the vine. We are the branches that need to bear fruit, and remain on the vine. 
*TiS 686 / ATE 292 Lord Jesus we belong to you / Because we bear your name (Robin Mann). A straightforward and practical song asking God to help us to follow Christ well, with a refrain of "because we bear your name". Lyrics.
*ATW 487 Make your home in me (Fay White) A simple beautiful invitation. “If you fly to the point of the day’s sunrise or westward across the sea, if you travel to the uttermost ends of the earth, there I will be; Make your home in me as I make my home in you. I am everywhere that you can be. Make your home in me”. This is quite different to the Vineyard / Josh Young version you can find all over the internet. I can't find a sample of this one, unfortunately.
TiS 393 / GA365 Christ is alive with joy we sing (Stotter) Joyful alleluias, and Easter images of Christ as grain of wheat, rising sun, vine and bread. Sung to the familiar tune VULPIUS.
FFS35 I am the vine and you are the branches (Murray/Render) Fun tune and good words. Lyrics here, and a different tune, which also looks pretty good.
G(II)479 / GC672 I am the vine and you the branches (Hurd) Simple and good words. Lead sheet and lyrics. Sound sample.
*TiS 419 / NCH270 / CH592 / A&M252 / UMH544 / VU205 / WoV685 / ELW403 / HPP222 / GtG285 / PH314 / CP635 / CP(E) 185 / W&R327 / SP92 / 82Hml-513 Like the murmur of the dove's song (Daw) Excellent words and a simple tune about Christian unity. Each verse ends with "Come holy spirit, come". Lyrics and organ sample.  
TiS 531 / NCH76 / UMH664 / VU481 / R171 / ELW330 / HPP578 / W&R712 Sent forth by God's blessing (Westendorf) Lovely joyful folk tune (THE ASH GROVE), and the analogy of the vine and fruit is paramount in the first verse. NCH has a descant part written in, so look at that if you have some good high singers.
*ATOK 413 / Iona (HSNW) / CH533 / VU567 / StS039 / A&M510 / ELW798 / GA502 / SFFS 2130 / HPP317 / GtG726 / G(II)510 / GC700 / GC(II)687 / G(3)790 / CP430 / CP(E) 622 / W&R350 / URW060 / Lau877 Will you come and follow me / The Summons (Iona / KELVINGROVE) A classic. Don't sing it too slowly or it really drags and takes forever!
URW107 You are the vine and we are the branches (Garnaas-Holmes) This is quite good, and can be sung as a round. The lyrics won't work for Australian congregations where being "rooted in you" would mean something entirely different.
SiS678 You are the vine we are the branches (Daniels / Rigby) A good older style chorus. I think this still has some good life in it yet… Lyrics and chords (downloads a Word doc)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Songs, Hymns and Music for Easter 4B (April 26 2015)

Acts 4:5-12   
Christ the cornerstone, through which healing and salvation come - you could sing just about any hymn to this passage!
*NCH387 / GtG361 / PH443 / GC(II)646 / RS782 / CP524 / Lau829 O Christ the great foundation (Lew) Excellent words of salvation and justice from Timothy Tingfang Lew, sung to the tune of "The church's one foundation" (AURELIA) which is in all standard hymnals. Lyrics There is a second possible tune (ABREU), which is more challenging. Note that the lyrics in the NCH are slightly different, and more inclusive. 
ATE 213 I go to the rock (Rambo) This just has the chorus, which is pretty old-school, but I think it still works OK. I didn't know there were verses until typing this; and I think I like it better without the verses! Good for kids. Lyrics. Dottie Rambo herself singing it!
G(3)767 Called by Christ (Duck) A lovely song with a joyous chorus that feels like a good one to build community. "Built on the bedrock". Lyrics and lead sheet. Sound sample.
*TiS 669 / GGives2 Well Jesus is the rock (Dyson) Fun song for kids. Good for kids  Lyrics, melody line and chords.

Psalm 23   
The Lord is my shepherd
*TiS 10 / AHB 16 / AoV1-144 / NCH479 / Iona (Common Ground) / CH14/16 / UMH136 / VU747/8 / StS099 / LBW451 / ELW778 / GA473 / HPP55 / GtG801 / PH170 / CP519 / CP(E) 594 / W&R86 / Cha0789 / Srce662 / Lau806 The Lord's my Shepherd I'll not want / God is my shepherd It's not inclusive, but I think it's more than a sentimental favourite. NCH, VU and Chalice all have an inclusive language version. Traditional lyrics and sheet music.
*MV126 Are you a shepherd? (Duck) Good and joyous. Lots of images of God: shepherd, teacher, mother, father. We sung this once last year, and it would be good to do it again. A catchy chorus. Good for kids.
*Tune In: Like the sun upon my skin / God’s Mercy A beautiful ballad about identifying God's mercy in the beauty of creation. Lyrics, sound sample and songbook.
*Tune In / ATAR596 He comes with his arms open wide / The God that I know (Anderson) A ballad drawing on God’s strength and comfort; not easy if unfamiliar. Lyrics and sample and songbook here.
*NCYC'07 Lead me on (Gioia) A pretty cool gospel rock song. We used to sing this a lot, but not so much lately. Maybe worth reviving?
PfAS023I My shepherd is the Lord (Villarreal) I quite like this tune, and the paraphrase is good. It's particularly good for Spanish-speaking (or bilingual) congregations; it's fine in English too. Could also use the verses with a cantor.  
*AoV1-033 / WoV690 / ELW423 / SFFS 2058 / GtG473 / G(II)29 / GC31 / GC(II)23 / G(3)035 / PfAS023H / Lau951 Shepherd Me O God (Haugen) A nice reworking of the 23rd Psalm. The verses are a little challenging, so I would use the chant on its own: “Shepherd me O God beyond my wants, beyond my fears, from death into life”. Lyrics and a slightly odd sound sample.
*Cha734(ii) / PfAS023G Shepherd Me O God (Haugen) Same as the above, but the chorus only, used as a Psalm refrain. 
TiS 011 / AHB 98 / UMH137 / GA025 / G(3)034 My shepherd is the Lord (Gelineau) Of the two listed here, I prefer Response 1 (Gelineau). A good alternative if you would like to use a cantored Psalm.
G(II)458 / GC654 / GC(II)628 / G(3)725 With a Shepherd's Care (Chepponis) Very nice words with feminine and masculine images for God. Would be very straightforward to sing. Sound sample of a choral arrangement.
*CH355 / VU210 / HPP81 / GtG274 / GC(II)525 / G(3)628 / CP630 / W&R99 / URW098 You Lord Are Both Lamb and Shepherd (Dunstan) Beautiful words. Can be sung to many tunes. I like it to PICARDY or WESTMINSTER ABBEY. Sound sample, lyrics and sheet music sample here.
*Taizé / GtG814 / CP563 / PfAS062D In God alone my soul can find rest and peace / Mon ame se repose (Berthier) A beautiful healing chant from Taize. Words and music and sound samples for learning the parts  Good for kids.
FFS39 It all depends on where I'm going (Gibson) Good words of God's constant presence through all of life's travels, sung to a simple Celtic-style tune (TE HORO). Full music and lyrics here.
*CH716 / VU374 / FFS10 / SFFS 2128 / W&R477 / Cha575 Come and find the quiet centre (Murray) A good song for the beginning of worship. I would prefer to sing this to one of the more traditional melodies offered (Tune 1 in FFS) or BEACH SPRING (TiS 493). Sheet music & lyrics.
*W&R655 / URW202 Come Away from Rush and Hurry (Dawn) Excellent words of resting in a sacred space to the familiar tune BEACH SPRING (TiS 493).
*Cha734 (I) / URW244 My shepherd you supply my need and holy is your name Responsive psalm with sung refrain to the tune of the first line of Brother James' Air.
*Here in this place Breathe in the morning air (Wiltshire) Lovely words for a soloist to sing at the start of a morning service to welcome the congregation. Sung to LOVE UNKNOWN. Free sheet music. 
*Recorded Music 23rd Psalm (Bobby McFerrin) A beautiful feminine rendering of the Psalm. From the album Medicine Man. Listen to it here on Youtube. Gave people some challenging images of God last time we played it. If you'd like to sing it, it's also in the Unitarian Universalist book "Singing the Journey" and "Music for Liturgy" from St. Gregory of Nyssa.
Online Resource All of my days (Bruxvoort-Colligan) A gentle song with the chorus "All of my days, God's mercy follows". Would be simple to have the congregation join in on the chorus. Breathy sound sample, lyrics; sheet music available for purchase.
Online Resource Surely Goodness and Mercy (Bruxvoort-Colligan) A gentle psalm refrain with a read psalm. Breathy sound sample, lyrics; sheet music available for purchase.

1 John 3:16-24
The importance of love and generous living.
*GtB God is love and love is giving (Langmead) A simple kids' song about God's love. A round. Good for kids. Sound sample.
*CH115 / MV089 / Iona (Love from Below) Love is the touch of intangible joy (Robertson / Bell) words of different kinds of love – deep friendship, romantic love (Love is the lilt in a lingering voice), and the love of God. Each verse ends with "God is where love is, for love is of God". Tune is simple enough for a congregation to sing first go, and it has gorgeous chords. Lyrics (loads a pdf).
*ATAR656 Heavy our hearts (Watts / Lord) A lovely soothing chant naming our heaviness and seeking God's shelter and healing.
*TiS 699 / AHB 571 / ATN 65 / WoV664 / GA318 / Srce35 / Lau920 A new commandment I give unto you (Westwood) Note that older sources do not have inclusive words, but more recent publications use "others" rather than "all men" to make it inclusive for all people. 
UMH710 / VU580 / LBW500 / ELW812 / ELW813 / HPP505 / GC600 / GC(II)579 / G(3)677 Faith of Our Fathers living still / A Living Faith (Faber) Good words and a simple, standard hymn tune. Lyrics include fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers. Sound sample, lyrics and sheet music sample.
GA461 / G(II)445 / GC629 / GC(II)608 / G(3)699 God Is Love and all who live in love live in God (Haas) This is a nice cantor and refrain piece. The refrain is very simple and the cantor part is inclusive. The words are really good. Lyrics.
*TiS 657 / CH263 / VU700 / A&M559 / AA50 / CP(E) 447 / Cha656 / SP242 God of freedom God of justice (Murray / Guthrie Foote) Powerful lyrics. Can be sung to either TREDEGAR (new, but not too hard) or PICARDY (very familiar). Lyrics and midi. 
*Taizé / MV075 / StS079 / SFFS 2118 / GtG284 / GC(II)479 / G(3)547 / SP99 / URW395 Holy Spirit Come to Us / Veni sancte spiritus / Tui amoris (Berthier) Best if you have a cantor, but works well if you don't, too. Sheet music, translations, sound samples. 
*MV094 Love knocks and waits (Damon) Lovely words and a simple lilting melody. Groovy bossa nova mp3 sample here. I reckon I would play it faster for our congregation.
TiS 630 / AHB 554 The law of Christ alone can make us free Great words by Australian poet James McAuley. Lyrics are not gender inclusive for God. The tune may be tricky if not familiar, so you may need to introduce the melody to your congregation.
UMH592 / HPP548 / W&R555 / Cha470 When the Church of Jesus shuts its outer door (Pratt Green) Sung to tune KING'S WESTON, this hymn has strong words of reproach and mission. Could work as a confession, sending out, or offering song. Lyrics.

John 10:11-18
Christ as the good shepherd who gathers the flock
In addition to those suggested for Psalm 23 above, you could also sing:
*MV126 Are you a shepherd? (Duck) Good and joyous. Lots of images of God: shepherd, teacher, mother, father. A catchy chorus. Good for kids
*Online Resource Christ is the shepherd strong (Wren) Clear challenging words, set to a fairly simple tune. Verses focus on 4 images of Christ: Shepherd, Nurse, peaceful Prince and teacher. Lyrics and sheet music.
TiS 420 Holy Spirit go before us (Elizabeth Smith) Great words of evangelism and justice to a simple lilting melody. If you think your congregation can't cope with a new tune this week, it can be sung to AUSTRIA (TiS 93).
TiS 239 / AHB 185 / ATE 236 / NCH48 Jesus the Christ said "I am the bread" Note verse 4 “The one good shepherd of the sheep am I”. This simple Urdu song is quite good for kids. Some books have “Jesus the Lord said...” and some say "for mankind", but some change that to "for the world"
*TiS474 / AoV1-012 / ATAR595 / CH623 / SFFS 2236 / HPP553 / A&M363 / GtG401 / G(II)539 / GC839 / GC(II)743 / G(3)848  / CP465 / W&R649 / Cha284 / SP175 / URW054 / Lau475 Here in this place new light is streaming / Gather us in (Haugen). Excellent words, very well known. “Nourish us well and teach us to fashion lives that are holy and hearts that are true”. Lyrics, sound samples, sheet music.