Notes on the Notes – November 11, 2018
100th Anniversary of the Armistice
This week’s scripture readings:
Revelation 21 John 15: 9-17
This week’s music:
“Weep for the Dead” (VU #526)
“Weep for the dead.
Let tears and silence tell of blood and battle, horror and renown.
The years diminish, but do not dispel the pain of lives destroyed,
And life laid down.
Silent the dead.
Remembering we stand silent as they,
For words cannot esteem causes of war,
The love of native land,
All that they were,
And all they might have been.
Raising our flag, we stand with muffled drum,
Judged by the colours of God’s love and loss,
Recalling as we pray, “You kingdom come,”
A purple robe, and blood upon a cross.
Summoned by love that leaves no room for pride,
We pray that every continent and isle,
Wounded by war, war’s hate may lay aside,
And find a way to heal and reconcile.
Weep for the dead, from all the ills of earth.
Stand by the cross that bids all hatred cease.
March to the drums of dignity and worth.
Salute the King of Love, the Prince of Peace.”
This hymn of remembrance by Brian Wren was commissioned by the Norwich Branch of the Royal British Legion in 1987. Wren described it as “an attempt…to sing faithfully about patriotism and war.” The tune HARRIS, was composed in 1938 by Charles Harris. It may be more familiar as the tune used for the hymn “O Valiant Hearts,” written in remembrance of lives lost in World War I.
To hear the hymn played on organ, go to: https://youtu.be/eSKUf2RxDUk
To hear “O Valiant Hearts” with WWI imagery, go to: https://youtu.be/K6q6Z_FonF0
“We Turn to You” (VU #685)
“We turn to you, O God of every nation,
Giver of good and origin of life;
Your love is at the heart of all creation,
Your hurt is people’s pain in war and death.
We turn to you, that we may be forgiven
For crucifying Christ on earth again.
We know that we have never wholly striven
To share with all the promise of your reign.
Free every heart from pride and self-reliance,
Our ways of thought inspire with simple grace;
Break down among us barriers of defiance,
Speak to the soul of all the human race.
On all who fight on earth for right relations
We pray the light of love from hour to hour.
Grant wisdom to the leaders of the nations,
The gift of carefulness to those in power.
Teach us, good Lord, to serve the need of others,
Help us to give and not to count the cost.
United us all, to live as sisters, brothers,
Defeat our Babel with your Pentecost!”
This hymn was written by Fred Kaan to celebrate United Nations Day in 1965. The tune, WELWYN, was written by Sir Alfred Scott-Garry in 1900.
Hear the hymn played on organ at: https://youtu.be/wUrJY48LyXM
“Come and Fill Our Hearts” (MV #16)
This short song of centering and healing prayer comes from the Taize Community, with music by Jacques Berthier (1982).
Hear the song at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1QPhDiiIbE
“O God, Our Help in Ages Past” (VU #806)
“O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come,
Our shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal home.
Under the shadow of thy throne thy saints have dwelt secure;
Sufficient is thine arm alone, and our defence is sure.
Before the hills in order stood, or earth received its frame,
From everlasting thou art God, to endless years the same.
A thousand ages in thy sight are like an evening gone,
Short as the watch that ends the night before the rising sun.
Time like an ever-rolling stream soon bears us all away;
We fly forgotten, as a dream dies at the opening day.
O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come,
Be thou our guard while troubles last, and our eternal home.”
“Our God, Our Help in Ages Past” is a hymn by Isaac Watts (1719). The lyrics are a paraphrase of the 90th Psalm. It originally consisted of nine stanzas; however, in present usage the even-numbered stanzas other than the second stanza are commonly omitted to leave a total of six. In 1738, John Wesley changed the first line of the text from “Our God” to “O God.”
The hymn is often sung as part of the Remembrance Day service in Canada.
The tune ST ANNE, to which the text is most often sung, was composed by William Croft in 1708.
“O Day of Peace”
“O day of peace that dimly shines through all our hopes and prayers and dreams,
Guide us to justice, truth and love, delivered from our selfish schemes.
May swords of hate fall from our hands, our hearts from envy find release,
Till by God’s grace our warring world shall see Christ’s promised reign of peace.
Then shall the wolf dwell with the lamb, nor shall the fierce devour the small;
As beasts and cattle calmly graze, a little child shall lead them all.
Then enemies shall learn to love, all creatures find their true accord;
The hope of peace shall be fulfilled, for all the earth shall know the Lord.”
This week’s anthem has lyrics by Carl P. Daw, Jr. The words quote from Isaiah, referencing the peacable kingdom, a future period of time on Earth when peace and unity shall reign. The music is a Scottish tune, arranged by Hal H. Hopson.
“Make Me a Channel of Your Peace”
“Make me a channel of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring your love.
Where there is injury, your pardon, Lord,
And where there’s doubt, true faith in you.
Make me a channel of your peace.
Where there’s despair in life, let me bring hope.
Where there is darkness, only light,
And where there’s sadness, ever joy.
O Master, grant that I may never seek
So much to be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved, as to love with all my soul.
Make me a channel of your peace.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.
In giving of ourselves that we receive,
And in dying that we’re born to eternal life.”
The anonymous text that is usually called the “Prayer of Saint Francis” is a widely known Christian prayer for peace. It has been frequently set to music by notable songwriters and quoted by prominent leaders, and its broadly inclusive language has found appeal with diverse faiths encouraging service to others. The prayer was heavily publicized during both World War I and World War II. The hymn is an anthem of the Royal British Legion and is often sung at Remembrance Day services. The worship choir will be singing an arrangement of Sebastian Temple’s tune (1967) by Mark Barnard.
Hear the song at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI1Gst7pEqc
“I Am Walking a Path of Peace” (MV #221)
“I am walking a path of peace,
I am walking a path of peace,
I am walking a path of peace,
Lead me home,
Lead me home.”
The words and music for our benediction response this week are by Janet Bauman Tissandier of Canmore, Alberta.
Please note that a Moment of Silence will be observed at 11 a.m.
Two Remembrance Day videos:
The first video was taken at Brookside Cemetery in Winnipeg, at the candlelight Service of Remembrance in honour of the Queen’s Jubilee in 2012:
The following video was created using photos from the war memorials in Ottawa: