I found this great new text by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette at her website here. It is sung to the tune of AURELIA (to which “The Church’s One Foundation” is often sung). It is based off the gospel lectionary passage for this upcoming Sunday, November 3rd (24th Sunday after Pentecost – Year C). Enjoy!
Zacchaeus was a tax man who one day climbed a tree,
For he was short in stature and said he could not see.
And yet he had a problem that mattered even more:
He didn’t see the suffering his greed had caused the poor.
O Lord, you saw Zacchaeus — so wealthy, yet alone.
You said, “Come down — and hurry! I’m coming to your home.”
For you broke bread with sinners and saw within each one
A person loved and treasured — God’s daughter or God’s son.
It wasn’t just the treetop that helped Zacchaeus see;
Your love and welcome showed him how different life could be.
He said that he’d start over and work to make things fair;
He’d speak the truth, bring justice, and find new ways to share.
O Christ, you bid us welcome and help us all to see!
May we respond by building a just society.
Then children won’t be hungry and all will share your bread.
Then those who now must struggle will live in joy instead.
For more great hymns by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette, check out her website here.
“When Worry Breaks Our Troubled Hearts”
by Stephen Fearing
1. When worry breaks our troubled hearts
and hands that tremble fill with fear,
Creator, come and fix in us
the faith that knows your grace is near.
2. When gone seem days that once were fair
and eyes that cry seek peace above,
Redeemer, come and free in us
the fullness of your steadfast love.
3. When dread, despair, and death oppress
and feet but stumble, trip, and fall,
Sustainer, come and seal our hearts
with courage, peace, and love for all.
4. “I will be who I’ll be,” says God
to us who serve the Three in One.
We strive together ’til the day
when God, at last, sees all things done.
Suggested tunes: Prospect, Bourbon, Duke’s Street, Erhalt Uns Herr, and Hamburg.
With many thanks to Michael Morgan at Columbia Theological Seminary for his editorial and theological support!
Filed under Music, Poetry
Well, here it is: my first ever attempt at hymnody. The following text that I have composed is structured as 188.8.131.52. D. Suggested tunes are ABBOT’S LEIGH, BEECHER, HOLY MANNA, HYFRYDOL, HYMN TO JOY, and NETTLETON.
Death has died, no longer holds us;
God’s embrace and love endure.
Never ceasing, always blessing,
grace has found us, made us sure.
God the Alpha and Omega
gives us life anew each day.
Christ has died and Christ is Risen;
all our fears have passed away.
Text by Stephen Fearing.