Songs, Hymns & Music for Transfiguration A (February 23, 2020)

Exodus 24:12-18
Moses goes up the mountain to meet with God. God as fire.  
See also suggestions for the Gospel reading.
  • ATN 77 / SiS346 / SLW067 / G(II)542 / GC749 O Welcome All You Noble Saints of Old / In Christ There Is a Table Set for All (Robert Stamps) We often sing "We and God at Table are sat down" instead of the original "God and man at table are sat down" from ATN 77, however, the Gather hymnals use "In Christ there is a table set for all" which I also really like! Good for celebration of communion Older style lyrics. Good for kids. 
  • NCH020 God of Abraham and Sarah (James Gertmenian) A great newish but very singable hymn tune with words that pick up the history of our faith. Moses gets a mention which is why I've listed it. Could also be sung to NETTLETON if you want something familiar. New words to old tunes.
Psalm 2
Serve God or God gets mad, but happy are those who take refuge in God. This is my son. A traditional evening Psalm.

  • BUC Music Project / Online Resource Why do we listen and fail to hear / Lament - for a people with a people with a dulled heart (Shawn Whelan) This lament, and its wailing ooooh would fit quite well with this passage. Sheet music and lyrics. Good for kids
  • NCH Psalter Happy are all who take refuge (Carolyn Jennings) A simple Psalm refrain.
  • Tune In / Online Resource You in all our worries / All will finish well (Dave Brown) “In this world where injustice reigns, you are in the midst of pain”. Excellent words of reassurance in a difficult world. Sound sample, lyrics and free downloadable songbook.
  • Online Resource Under God (Richard Bruxvoort-Colligan) A good, and simple song of justice. Don't be daunted by the sound sample, this would also work very well as a congregational song. Lyrics, sound sample and sheet music. 
  • AoV1-056 / CH217 / GA541 / G(II)551 / GC761 / GC(II)750 / G(3)859 / URW201 / Lau881 God of Day and God of Darkness (Marty Haugen) This song is specific for evening services, but lovely words and set to a familiar tune (BEACH SPRING). I often think this is only good for an evening service, but the image of darkness and night doesn't have to be taken literally, particularly at the Transfiguration! And the call to rest at the end of the last verse would be good for those who take the celebration of Sabbath as a call to rest. Lyrics. New words to old tunes
  • PfAS002C Why this dark conspiracy? (Norman Goreham) Quite straightforward hymn-like version of the psalm.   
  • PfAS002D You are my son (Robert Wetzler) Quite straightforward psalm refrain.
  • Emergent Psalter The rulers of the earth (Isaac Everett) A simple refrain to this Psalm, which can be read while a nice minor vamp is played. Sample sheet music.
  • TiS 47 / AHB 46 / AoV1-175 / NCH25 / CH161 / UMH117 / VU806 / LBW504 / ELW806 / GA459 / A&M746 / HPP1 / GtG687 / PH210 / GC614 / GC(II)588 / G(3)688 / CP528 / CP(E) 537 / W&R84 / Cha067 /  Srce2-441 / URW200 / 82Hml-680 / PfAS090B / Lau955 / StF132 / MP498 Our God our help in ages past (Isaac Watts) A good solid very well known hymn! The surprising thing about this one is that the language is inclusive for God in most sources. Not all sources are inclusive for humanity, so check. Lyrics and sheet music. Oldy-but-a-goody. 
  • TiS 689 / ATE 286 / GtB Lord hear my praying, listen to me / Sorrowing song (Robin Mann) Powerful words of prayer to a simple tune. Words are straightforward about asking difficult questions of God. Sound sample. Lyrics.
  • Iona (T1AU) / CH222 / StJ / PfAS004B / StF145 Night has fallen / Dzuwa lapita (Malawian evening hymn) A simple song, but will only work in an evening service! Lyrics. Sound sample of one version being taught (Youtube).
Alternate Psalm: Psalm 99
God of justice, God is holy, worship at the mountain. 
This Psalm has lots of concepts in it, so I've only chosen a couple of particularly pertinent songs; you may wish to include a Sanctus.
  • TiS 753 / StS034 / ATFG558 / ELW525 / SP&P082 You are holy you are whole (Per Harling) A fun and joyous latin-rhythmed song; can also be sung with two parts at the same time. Lyrics and sheet music. Good for kids.
  • *GtG596 You are holy you are whole (Per Harling) An adaptation of the above song - the last few lines have been changed to say "Sing Hosanna in the highest, sing Hosanna, sing Hosanna to our God"; makes it much more like a Sanctus. Good for kids.  
  • TiS 58 Be exalted O God, above the heavens! Let your glory over all the earth be found (Jane Marshall) An excellent refrain to the Psalm for this week. The cantor line is not totally inclusive so will need some attention.
  • TiS 723 / AoV2-092 / ATOK 381 / Iona (M&G, Common Ground) / CH769 / UMH65 / VU944, VU951 / StJ / GtG594 / ELW473 / SFFS 2007 / G(II)395 / GC563 / W&R737 / Cha111 / ZSS48 / Lau723 / StF779 Holy holy holy / Santo santo santo (Argentinian folk song) Better in Spanish. A nice quiet devotional song. If you are singing in Spanish, and would prefer not to sing the masculine "Santo eres Senor" some versions have "Santo eres Dios" or "Santo eres tu", which makes it more of a personal approach to God. Good for kids. Sheet music samples.  
  • Emergent Psalter O mighty God lover of justice (Isaac Everett) A catchy refrain, that got stuck in my head for days after I ran through it. Can be sung with the Psalm read over instrumentation. Sample sheet music (click on "downloads"). Good for kids. 
  • Cha751 To God all people give thanks (Jack Fox) Joyful Latin-rhythmed sung response and responsively read Psalm. I think it would be fun to do a responsive Psalm with a sung response. 
  • Iona (Love From Below) / CP424 Sing praise to God on mountain tops (John Bell / Graham Maule) A song of praise to God for the beauty of creation to a traditional English tune (THE VICAR OF BRAY). Sheet music sample.   New words to old tunes.    
  • *MV 60 / Cha026 / STB112 God, we give you heartfelt praise / Chú goán kámsia oló Lí (Timothy Tan) A lively round from Taiwan. “God we give you heartfelt praise, mercy and love you show us daily, blessed always be your name”. While based on Taiwanese harmonic modes, it is not too hard for Western singers to pick up. Would work well to receive the offering. Good for kids. 
  • *TiS 132 / AHB 65 / NCH277 / CH651 / UMH64 / VU315 / LBW165 / ELW413 / A&M276 / HPP243 / GtG001 / PH138 / G(II)332 / GC475 / GC(II)483 / CP001 / CP(E) 202 / W&R136 / Cha004 / Srce243 / 82Hml-362 / Lau468 / StF011 / MP237 Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty (Walter Chalmers Smith) Old other-worldly language, but a surprisingly inclusive (in most hymnals) classic, and a great rousing hymn tune. Different resources have slightly altered lyrics. A surprisingly non-inclusive sample can be found here. Oldy-but-a-goody.
2 Peter 1:16-21
We saw it happen, so believe us. Prophecy comes from the Holy Spirit.
See also suggestions for the Gospel reading.
  • Online Resource / Tune In Peace In Our Time (Dave Brown) A groovy bossa nova song of peace and justice; not easy to sing. Lyrics. Sound sample. Free downloadable songbook.
  • TiS 613 / AHB 546 / ATOK 405 / CH166 / LBW469 / ELW765 / A&M713 / SFFS2197 / HPP265 / GtG683 / GC578 / GC(II)560 / G(3)663 / CP506 / CP(E) 507 / W&R469 / URW179 / 82Hml-482 / Lau969 / StF526 / MP882 Lord of all hopefulness Lord of all joy (Jan Struther) Excellent straightforward Irish tune (SLANE), and beautiful words. Would be a good choice for the final song. Lyrics & sheet music. New words to old tunes
  • AHB 341 A lamp for our feet has been given (Granton Douglas Hay) I reckon this one is pretty good, especially for those congregations who only have the AHB.
  • TiS 585 / AHB 500 / AoV1-054 / ATA 137 / NCH489 / CH540 / VU626 / LBW497 / ELW611 / GtG182 / GA468 / GC646 / GC(II)622 / G(3)724 / CP508 / CP(E) 469 / Srce280 / 82Hml-692 / Lau795 / StF248 / MP275 I heard the voice of Jesus say (Horatio Bonar) Hymnals vary a lot in their translations of this older hymn and in the tunes to which it is set. Oldy-but-mostly-a-goody. Lyrics and sheet music.
Matthew 17:1-9
The transfiguration
  • ATFG555 / NCYC03 Open your eyes / See Yourself (Robin Mann) “see yourself in the one who’s shining on the hill”. Puts the transfiguration in the context of a whole lot of other New Testament stories. Excellent newer song; verses are a little tricky. Good for kids 
  • STB298 You are full of Light Lord Jesus (Syriac Liturgy) transfiguration A simple song from South India. It's very beautiful - the tune will need to be taught. Probably simplest to sing it in English. 
  • SFFS 2153 / GC(II)770 / G(3)878 / Cha182 Transform Us as you, transfigured (Sylvia Dunstan) Good words to the familiar and quite meditative hymn tune  PICARDY (TiS 497). New words to old tunes Lyrics and sheet music preview 
  • TiS474 / AoV1-012 / ATE 295 / 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 (Marty Haugen). Excellent words, very well known. “Nourish us well and teach us to fashion lives that are holy and hearts that are true”. Lyrics and sheet music samples. 
  • CH355 / VU210 / HPP81 / GtG274 / GC(II)525 / G(3)628 / CP630 / W&R99 / URW098 You Lord Are Both Lamb and Shepherd (Sylvia 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. New words to old tunes.
  • NCH182 / VU104 / SFFS 2103 / HPP147 / GtG191 / CP166 / W&R245 We have come at Christ's own bidding (Carl P Daw Jr) Excellent lyrics that bring the images of the transfiguration to the faith of today. Sung to the familiar and very lovely tune HYFRYDOL (TiS 517). Lyrics. Tune sample. New words to old tunes.
  • AoV2-103 / AoVK-115 / G(II)514 / GC712 / GC(II)715 Holy Ground (Brenda Pena) I love the energy and passion in this song and the vision of the heavens embracing the earth. I especially like the “Do you believe in freedom? Yes we do Lord! Do you believe in justice? Justice for all!” call in the middle. Bilingual English/Spanish song. Good for kids. Sound and sheet music samples
  • ATFG 541 What is this scene? (David Froemming / Leigh Newton) A good story telling song. Not too difficult for the congregation to sing on a first attempt, but it will need a brief “teaching time” for the melody. You could also ask the musicians to present as part of the offering. The words are great.
  • TiS 255 / CH135 / VU434 / CP018 O laughing Light O first-born of creation (Sylvia Dunstan) A slightly more modern version of the Phos Hilaron. Words are good but the tune in TiS (ADRIAN) is a little tricky.
  • URW432 Radiant light divine (Rufino Zaragoza) This is pretty lovely. A nice chant based on the Phos Hilaron.
  • Online Resource Seeing Jesus (Bruce Harding) A simple chant, needs at least 2 of the parts. Sample PDF, and available for purchase here
  • NCH183 / GtG193 Jesus take us to the mountain (Jaroslav Vajda) A very positive transfiguration hymn that asks good questions and provides some good challenges and clearly looks onward to Good Friday. Lyrics. 
  • TiS 268 / AHB 224 / AoV1-170 / NCH132 / CH320 / UMH246 / VU59 / LBW039 / ELW267 / GA295 / HPP107 / PH040 / GtG134 / GC343 / GC(II)353 / G(3)437 / CP154 / CP(E) 57 / W&R179 / Cha143 / Srce399 / 82Hml-100 / Lau156 / StF330 / MP393 Joy to the world The Lord is come (Isaac Watts) So, this was not actually written as a Christmas carol (read the lyrics: no baby Jesus), and I think it would work well for Christ the King Sunday and Transfiguration, so maybe it's worth a go! Oldy-but-a-goody.    
  • TiS 234 / AHB 390 / A&M281 / GC778 / GC(II)771 / G(3)877 / CP167 / CP(E)248 / VU103 / LBW89 / ELW315 / Lau209 How good Lord to be here / Tis Good Lord to Be Here (Joseph Robinson) Good solid words and a good solid tune (I like CARSLISLE best). I like the ending “But since you bid us leave the mount, come with us to the plain”. Oldy-but-a-goody. 
  • NCYC07 You shine (Kent Crawford) A good song, with an excellent chorus "You shine over us, you shine through us, so let your light shine on around the world". Definitely for the more youthful congregation. It would also work to play the CD from NCYC07 if you don't have a band of musicians. Good for teenagers. 
  • ATW 447 Thank you Jesus for ordinary miracles (Robin Mann) Fun and joyful. "Up in a cloud in the air"! Lyrics. Good for kids. 
  • Recorded Song Little Lights (Punch Brothers) This track from a recent Punch Brothers album sings of the desire of remaining in a transcendent place, but needing to return to reality - it made me think of the transfiguration, even though it's not written about it... I particularly like the line "guide us back to where we are from where we wanna be"... Lyrics. Sound.  
  • Recorded Song Transfiguration (Sufjan Stevens) I love this song. Lyrics. Here’s a video of him performing it live here on youtube, which is a bit more eclectic than the studio recording. Note: if playing recorded songs in worship, it's a really good idea to provide lyrics to the congregation either in a handout or using projection. Last year Daniel Broadstock sang it at our church. It was amazing...
  • Liturgy for the Whole Church (p69) The transfiguration (Susan Bock) A narrated skit. If you have this book, or access to it, this would be good to do.
  • Lau215 / Online Resource Transfigure us O Lord (Bob Hurd) Really excellent words. Maybe better for a soloist. Thanks to the anonymous reader who suggested this. Sound sample & purchase options. Lyrics
  • Online Resource Transfigure me (Christopher Grundy) I particularly like the chorus of this, that could be used as a sung response. The verses are also good. Youtube recording (rough, but gives you an idea). Sheet music. Free Bulletin Insert
  • Online Resource Transfiguration (Black Hatted) This song picks up on the disciples' desire for Christ to stay. Lyrics and sound sample. Instructional video for guitarists.  Thanks to Tim Larson for this suggestion. 
What will you be singing? Add a comment, especially if it's something I haven't thought of!

5 comments:

Sharon said...

Our congregation loves Graham Kendrick's "Shine, Jesus, Shine." Thanks for all the work you put into this site - it's wonderful!

Peter Robson said...

A great pity that AHB 341 is not in TiS. One of the best hymns in the section of the Holy Scriptures which is otherwise poverty stricken in TiS. I refer to your site regularly. Peter

Linda W said...

I have the words of a song I've used previously on Transfiguration Sunday, but no note of the tune - Can anyone help?

When Moses went up the mountain (3)
he waited there with God
He waited there with God (2)
When Moses went up the mountain
He waited there with God

I reckon it must be something quite simple but I can't for the life of me remember or work it out!

Ken Wells said...

Songwriters: Trad.
The Bear Went Over The Mountain lyrics © Beechwood Music Corp.

ManjiDavid9 said...

Hi Natalie,
Thanks so much for your site, it is usually the first site I look at for help in selecting songs.
Firstly a correction - in my edition of AHB, 'How good Lord to be here' is #390, not #224 as shown on the web page tonight.
I am using 'Mine eyes have seen the glory' as a closing; maybe a bit 'left field' but does pick up a few themes from the readings.
God bless; David