Songs, Hymns & Music for Proper 11A / Pentecost 16A (July 19, 2020)

Genesis 28:10-19a
Jacob, alone in an unfamiliar land dreams of a passage to heaven, and receives anew God’s promise to Abraham. Recognises God’s presence and worships. Bethel.
  • NCH002 / ZSS117 Glory Glory Hallelujah! (African-American) Excellent chorus; includes the verse “We are climbing Jacob’s ladder” and “every rung goes higher higher”. Lyrics and story. Sound sample (youtube). Good for kids.
  • AoV2-154 / NCH606 / UMH528 / VU497 / A&M352 / HPP471 / CP538 / CP(E) 526 / Cha577 / Srce492 / MP482 Nearer my God to you / thee (Sarah Flower Adams). I didn’t grow up with this song, so I find the tune kind of sappy and sentimental. Having said that, I really like the words in the NCH and it is an excellent fit for this reading “When I am wandering as Jacob did, and in the deepest night, the path is hid, my dreams will bring me, too, nearer my God, to you”. Please note that not all sources have such accessible words. Traditional lyrics.
  • NCH500 / UMH418 / HPP454 / G(II)497 / GC693 We are climbing Jacob’s ladder (African American) A traditional well-known favourite in some circles; NCH replaces “Soldiers of the cross” with “bearers of the cross”. Note that not all sources are as accessible. Traditional lyrics. Note there are also many recordings of this song (e.g. Pete Seeger, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Paul Robeson, Bruce Springsteen, Jane Siberry) that you may also want to use; it's interesting to see how each of these singers has altered the lyrics.
  • Good for kids. Oldy-but-a-goody.
  • TiS 569 / AHB 478 / NCH18/19 / CH167 / UMH127 / VU651 / LBW343 / ELW618 / StF465 / A&M652 / HPP432 / GtG065 / PH281 / CP565 / CP(E) 455 / W&R501 / Cha622 / 82Hml690 / StF465 / Lau960 / MP201 Guide me O thou great Jehovah / Redeemer (William Williams) A rousing hymn of God’s presence and strength and making it to the other side. "Bread of heaven, feed me now and evermore." Lyrics and sheet music. Oldy-but-a-goody.
  • *AoV2-103 / AoVK-115 / G(II)514 / GC712 / GC(II)715 / G(3)809 The heavens embrace the earth / On Holy Ground (Donna 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. Sample. 
  • ATW 433 At the dawn of the ages / You were in this place (Robin Mann) An Australian song about seeing God in this ancient land and in our indigenous people. “Do we take after Jacob, blind to what lies at hand, needing dreams to inform us God is here in this land?”. Tune is very smooth and simple. Lyrics.
  • Protest and Praise / Online Resource When God first promised Abram (David Bjorlin ) A hymn reflecting on how God comes to us in darkness (features Abram, Jacob, Moses and Rahab). Sung to the traditional tune CHRISTUS, DER IST MEIN LEBEN. Lyrics, sheet music sample and purchasing options. New words to old tunes
  • 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 / StF503 / MP449 Love divine all loves excelling (Charles Wesley) A beautiful classic song and most hymnals use a very inclusive version of this hymn, even the AHB. Lyrics and sheet music. You may also like to give Rend Collective Experiment's version a listen (hard for congregations to sing, but nice for listening). Oldy-but-a-goody.
  • Online Resource The sun went down on Jacob's grief (Christopher Idle) Good accessible words about this story. Lyrics and tune
Psalm 139:1-12, 23-24
 God knows us better than we know ourselves. We cannot hide.
  • AoV2-031 / ATW 424 / CH97 / A&M747 / GtG029 / GC(II)509 / SP301 / StF728 / Lau779 O God, you search me and you know me (Bernadette Farrell). My favourite version of Psalm 139, which fits this reading too. The tune flows effortlessly and it has a nice little hook at the end of each verse. Sample music and lyrics here
  • TiS 87 / CH096 / VU862 / GtG028 / PH248 / PfAS139D You are before me, Lord, you are behind (Ian Pitt-Watson) Excellent words, set either to the chant-like tune SURSUM CORDA or the Scottish tune HIGHLAND CATHEDRAL. The words are directly from the Psalm and are very beautiful. Lyrics. New words to old tunes
  • *CH145 God made me as I am (Bernadette Farrell) A lovely little song.  "God made me as I am, part of creation's plan. No-one else can ever be the part of God's plan that's me". Good for kids. Youtube with gestures (maybe American sign language?).
  • PfAS139C Lord you have searched me and you know (Hal Hopson) A very simple refrain for a responsive reading or chanted reading of this Psalm. 
  • NCH Psalter 139 (Jane Marshall) is a very simple refrain for this Psalm which is worth a look.
  • ATOK 320 / NCH351 / VU645 / StJ / WoV770 / ELW740 / SFFS 2051 / GtG488 / HPP516 / W&R680 / Cha075 I Was There to Hear Your Borning Cry (John Ylvisaker) A song of God’s presence in all stages of life. Very simple tune to sing. This always makes me think of Center Church on-the-Green in New Haven, CT. Lyrics, and a nice (slow) sound sample
  • SP&P084 You know my words before they’re said / All My Days (Laurie Zelman) A good contemporary version of this Psalm. It would be good sung by a soloist at first.  Youtube recording.  
  • God of My Breathing (Richard Bruxvoort-Colligan). Excellent words to a well-known hymn tune. Sample and lyrics.  New words to old tunes
  • *ATW 487 Make your home in me (Fay White) A simple beautiful invitation by Melbourne songwriter and teacher. “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. Sound sample. 
  • Taizé / TiS 725 / ATE 275 / AoV2-167 / ATE 275 / StJ / GA538 / GtG678 / G(II)553 / GC763 / URW391 In our darkness there is no darkness in your sight, the deepest night is clear as the daylight (La tenebre) (Jacques Berthier) Also translated as "Our darkness is never darkness". Sample music and lyrics.
  • NCH274 / CH118 / SFFS 2046 / GtG003 / CP390 / Cha014 Womb of Life and source of being (Ruth Duck) Feminine trinitarian imagery. An easier tune, listed in some hymnals is IN BABILONE. Others have LADUE CHAPEL which is a little less intuitive. Lyrics. New words to old tunes
  • STB008 Come Lord Jesus Christ / Esho hae Probhu (Bangladesh) (Bart Shaha) A good chant to sing in times of darkness. It has words in English and Bengali. The tune will need to be taught. Midi sample (very quick!) (search for Shaha).
  • URW349 Search me O God (Jane Marshall) A good and simple Psalm refrain. Great if you can add some additional parts
  • *Music by Heart 15 Darkness is not dark (Eric Law) A simple round, with optional cantor part. Good to teach to your congregation without lyric sheets or projections. Would be appreciated by kids, as it is simple. Good for kids.
  • StF109 In the darkness of the still night (Margaret Rizza) Good words connecting God's creative love with our own lives and concerns. The tune is gentle, but not simple. I suggest encouraging the congregation to join in on the line "Creator God you are there" during the verses for the first time it is used (but let them know that the tune is a little bit different in the middle of the verse, compared to the end of the verse). Lyrics
  • URW416 Listen to the song of the wind (Thomas Turner) This is quite lovely, and you could choose whichever verses are most appropriate for any service. Lyrics. Good for kids.
  • VU623 Dear weaver of our lives' design (Nancy Dorian) Beautiful imagery of God as the Weaver. Sung to the familiar tune REPTON. New words to old tunes. Lyrics.
  • *VU384 / SFFS 2052 / HPP229 / PH320 The Lone Wild Bird in lofty flight (Marty Haugen) Familiar tune and excellent words. First 3 verses and tune sample. New words to old tunes
  • < AoV2-079 / GA081 How Rich Are The Depths (Christopher Willcock) A good Cantor and refrain version of the Psalm.
  • * Open unto me light for my darkness (Richard Bruxvoort-Colligan). This is really lovely and meditative. Sample here.
  • *MV131 You, Creator God, have searched me (George Mulrain) Get out the maracas for this one! This joyous calypso chorus for this Psalm is so refreshing. I think it’s really good fun, and very catchy! Good fun for kids.  Good for kids
  • ATW 423 Examine my heart, explore my mind (Robin Mann) This is a bit tricky, but if familiar to your congregation would be great to sing. Lyrics
Alternative Hebrew Scripture: Wisdom of Solomon 12:13, 16-19
God's strength, and kindness in righteousness 
  • ATW 463 / Iona (T1AU) / ELW721 / SFFS 2219 / A&M835 / GtG750 / GC(II)451 / G(3)528 / W&R296 / URW436 Goodness is stronger than evil (Desmond Tutu) Words from Archbishop Desmond Tutu. "Victory is ours, victory is ours, through him who loves us". Some congregations change the last line to "Compassion is ours, compassion is ours...". It depends on the context in which you sing it, I suppose. Sound sample. Good for kids.
  • Taize / A&M834 / G(3)959 / SP323 / Lau221 God is forgiveness / Bog jest miloscia (Taize Community) "God is forgiveness, love and do not fear". A simple Taize chant which seems to suit this reading quite well. Sheet music, lyrics in many languages, sound samples.
  • StF761 Merciful Lord in your loving kindness hear our prayer (Simei Monteiro) A lovely simple song that can be sung as an Intercessory response. In Portuguese and English.
Alternative to the Alternative Hebrew Scripture: Isaiah 44:6-8
  • AoV2-070 / ATW 496 / MV090 / StJ / G(3)719 Don't be afraid (John 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. Sound sample.  This song could be used as a Psalm response I think.
  • FFS27 God of unexplored tomorrows (Beverly Jones) The tune will need to be taught, but is quite lovely (CROMWELL). Imagery of "God of rock and flowing river", "strong foundation" "cleansing, quenching water".
Alternative Psalm: Psalm 86:11-17
Listen to me in my trouble; prayer
  • NCH Psalter 86 O God you abound in steadfast love (Judy Hunnicutt) A nice joyful refrain for this cantored or read Psalm.
  • CH493 / UMH352 / HPP411 / Cha579 / StF523 It's Me It's Me O Lord / Standing in the Need of Prayer (African-American) A well known spiritual; good for prayers of confession or a time of personal reflection. Lyrics & sheet music.  
  • Taizé / TiS 741 / AoV1-017 / ATE 282 / LBW368 / ELW751 / GA431 / SFFS 2200 / GtG471 / G(II)410 / GC586 / GC(II)566 / G(3)666 / W&R484 / Srce519 / URW390 / Lau929 / PfAS013A / PfAS102A / MP908 O Lord hear my prayer (Jacques Berthier) A simple and very well known Taizé chant. Works well during intercessions. You could read the Psalm between repeats of this chant, or just use as a chant as is. Sheet music samples. Good for kids 
  • AoV2-003 / ATOK 313 / CH543 / StJ / GA404 / A&M042 / ELW715 / GtG314 / GC(II)512 / G(3)590 / SP13 / URW114 / Lau883 / StF706 Longing for light we wait in darkness / Christ, be our light (Bernadette Farrell) One of my favourites, especially if someone can sing or play the descant line in the later verses. Sound sample and lyrics. Good for kids. 
  • Music by Heart 68 Incline your ear (Ben Allaway) This is quite lovely. It will need to be taught (instructions on how to do that are in the book), but is not difficult. It has 5 parts. Google books has a preview.
  • GtG844 Incline your ear O Lord to me (Michael Morgan) Excellent words. The tune will need to be taught.
  • TiS 136 / NCH023 / CH187 / UMH121 / VU271 / LBW290 / ELW587 / HiOS135 / A&M806 / HPP45,46 / GtG435 / PH298 / GC626 / GC(II)603 / G(3)644 / CP606 / CP(E) 598 / W&R61 / Cha073 / SP316 / 82Hml-469/70 / StF416 / Lau810 / MP683 There's a Wideness in God's Mercy (Frederick Faber) This is a good older style hymn. Not all sources are inclusive, but some (like NCH, GtG, StF) are.
  • TiS 590 / AHB 165 / AoVK-117 / NCH506 / UMH526 / VU663 / LBW439 / ELW742 / HPP408 / GtG465 / PH403 / CP532 / W&R473 / Cha585 / Srce 776 / StF531 / MP746 What a Friend we have in Jesus (Joseph Scriven) There is a bit of masculine language, but the song has so many other good things about it. I like both tunes. AOVK has different lyrics, written specifically for kids, which I think are worth singing. Good for kids.
  • 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. Lyrics (loads a pdf).
Romans 8:12-25
Being led by the Spirit and God’s adopted children.
  • Tune In / Online Resource Father of Earth, Mother of Sea (Dave Brown) A latinesque song about the Spirit being with those who are victims, prisoners and the sick, as well as present in our prayers. Lyrics, sound sample, free downloadable sheet music.
  • Tune In / Online Resource Making things new (Sheree Anderson) A simple pop/rock song. “Take hold of the hope that I give, trust in me, reach out for the love you can live, eternally”. Good for kids. Lyrics, sound sample, free downloadable sheet music.
  • Taizé / TiS 747 / ATE 214 / Iona (M&G) / GtG842 / PfAS027A / URW393 The Lord is my light, my light and salvation (Communauté de Taizé) A simple and very popular Taizé chant. Note that this is really easy on recorder if you have a kid in your congregation who is learning it. Good for kids. Youtube.
  • TiS 417 / AoV2-133 / ATW 448 / VU387 / StJ / WoV683 / ELW397 / AA94 / HPP237 / GtG293 / PH323 / CP657 / W&R135 / Cha244 / URW203 / StB220 Loving Spirit, Loving Spirit (Shirley Murray). There are about a zillion tunes set for this. I prefer FELICITY (by Colin Gibson TiS 417), but also like RESTORATION and OMNI DIE. Lyrics and sheet music.New words to old tunes
  • STB008 Come Lord Jesus Christ / Esho hae Probhu (Bart Shaha) A good Bangaladeshi chant to sing in times of darkness. It has words in English and Bengali. The tune will need to be taught.  
  • TiS 465 / AHB 399 / ATA 115 / NCH279 / UMH119 / A&M271 / Iona (SBL) / CH116 / GA381 / Lau313 Our God in heaven / Father in heaven / Loving Creator grant to your children (Elena Maquiso) I really like this hymn, especially the Philippino folk melody to which it's set. Newer versions of the hymn from the Christian Conference of Asia have altered the lyrics to "Our God in heaven / Creator God" in the first verse. Other versions, such as CH4 have "Loving Creator / Parent and God".
  • 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 lead sheet.  
  • NCH057 / VU379 / WoV688 / LBW459 / ELW399 / SFFS 2121 / CP(E) 188 / Cha251 / URW079 / VF055 O Holy Spirit root of life (Jean Janzen) Good words from Hildegard of Bingen of "Holy Spirit","Eternal Vigour" and "Holy Wisdom". I like the phrase "encompass us with wings unfurled". Simple known tune (PUER NOBIS). Lyrics. New words to old tunes. 
  • TiS 410 / AHB 323 / NCH059 / CH615 / LBW523 / ELW582 / CP655 / 82Hml-511 Holy Spirit, ever dwelling (Timothy Rees) I like these words best to the tune NETTLETON (TiS 392). Lyrics.
  • TiS 178 / G(II)335 / GC478 / GC(II)487 / G(3)565 Praise the God who changes places (Brian Wren) I like the joy of the tune written by William Rowan (BOE) for this song. Lyrics and sign language here (scroll to the bottom for the lyrics). Sample here, to a different tune.
  • TIS 415 Praise the Spirit in creation (Michael Hewlett) Amazing words. Tune is unfamiliar, but good.
  • MV157 / Online Resource I am a child of God (Bruce Harding) A simple song with powerful words. Very easy to learn. I would just sing the first verse this week, as a round. It's important to remember that God speaks through children. Sound sample and sheet musicGood for kids.
Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43
Seed sown which grows up together with the weeds. Separate them at the harvest time.
  • *CH343 / GC(II)641 / G(3)738 The Reign of God (Delores Dufner) Excellent words, sung to a very familiar traditional American tune (LAND OF REST). Highly recommended. This song will also fit next week's readings, so if it's new, now would be a good time to introduce it. I'd play it a little quicker than this sample. Sample lyrics and tune.New words to old tunes
  • NCH608 Christ will come again (Brian Wren) One of few hymns that talks about sifting the weeds from the wheat. The tune is new, and fits the unusual metre of these words. It should be picked up quite quickly by a singing congregation, but would benefit from a quick lesson before the start of the service. “Christ will come again, God’s justice to complete, to reap the fields of time and sift the weeds from wheat. Then let us passionately care for peace and justice here on earth, and evil’s rage restrain with love, till Christ shall come again”.
  • *WoV658 / ELW506 / URW078 The word of God is source and seed (Delores Dufner) "The Word of God is source and seed; It comes to die and sprout and grow. So make your dark earth welcome warm; Root deep the grain God bent to sow." Lyrics (downloads a pdf).
  • NCH 528 / UMH583 / WoV753 / Cha478 You are the seed / Sois la semilla (Cesáreo Gabarain) This is a simple song to sing, and the words are very cheering. “You are the seed that will grow and new spout; you’re a star that will shine through the day”. Good for older kids who can read all the words.
  • AoVK-156 A sower, a sower, a sower went sowing This is fun. More of a storytelling song than one for joining in.
  • MV174 Soil of God (Holy Ground) (Jim Hannah) The tune is quite siple and the words are good “Soil of God, you and I, stand ready to bear seeds of faith nourished by God’s tender care”. It's probably more appropriate for last week, but would also fit this week. 
  • ELW736 / SFFS 2060 / GtG005 God the sculptor of the mountains (John Thornburg) A song full of excellent imagery, including "God, the sower of the seed" and "God the reaper of the harvest". Tune will need to be taught, but won’t take long to learn. Good for congregations in times of transition. Lyrics, sound sample, and sheet music. 
  • StS116 I saw a tree by the riverside / The Tree Song (Ken Medema) A great kid’s song about roots growing down to the water, and leaves growing up to the sunshine, and bearing fruit, and all that great stuff. Good for kids. Lyrics.
  • *GtG171 A sower came from ancient hills (Herman Steumpfle) Excellent words to a lovely tune that is simple to sing. Sound sample 
  • TiS 531 / NCH76 / UMH664 / VU481 / R171 / ELW330 / HPP578 / W&R712 Sent forth by God's blessing (Omar 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.“The seed of God’s teaching, our hungry souls reaching, shall blossom in action for all humankind”… Lyrics.New words to old tunes
  • ATAR593 Come to me all you who are weary (Lang) A soothly and slightly schmaltzy chorus. Easy to sing and fun accompaniment to play. 
  • WoV713 / ELW512 Lord let my heart be good soil (Handt Hanson) A simple and quite lovely short song with hope of being a fertile place for love and peace to grow.  
What will you be singing? I'd love to hear your idea - please add them in a comment below. 


Jane Hessdorfer said...

For the Psalm Reading 139:1-12, 23-24 -- popular choices in our Parish:
Yaweh I Know You are Near and Cleanse Me

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I think this is the Fay White 'Make Your Home in Me' version you were looking for:

Anonymous said...

If I take the wings of the morning based on Psalm 139 from Alleluia Aotearoa Nigel Eastgate. easy congregational song
v 2 I may reach the gateway of heaven,
Descend to the portals of hell,
Though spirits of evil or death appear,
I’ll show them no fear,
For God will be with me as well.