Windsor Park United Church

Notes on the Notes – October 11, 2020

Creation 5

Thanksgiving

Communion

Offering Thanks in Today’s World

Deuteronomy 8:7-18

This week’s music:

“We Praise You, O God” (VU #218)

The title for our hymn book, Voices United,  comes from the third stanza of this hymn.  The words were written by Julia Cory in 1902 at the request of the organist, for a Thanksgiving service at Brick Presbyterian Church in New York.  The words of the second verse remind us of the timelessness of God, and that God is with us even in the difficult times.  The melody, KREMSER, was arranged by the Viennese conductor Eduard Kremser from a tune published with the earlier text in a 17th-century collection of Dutch folk songs.

“We praise you, O God, our Redeemer, Creator;
In grateful devotion our tribute we bring.
We lay it before you; we kneel and adore you;
We bless your holy name, glad praises we sing.

We worship you, God of our mothers and fathers,
Through trial and tempest, companion and guide.
When perils o’ertake us, you will not forsake us,
But faithful to your promise, you walk by our side.

With voices united our praises we offer
And gladly our songs of thanksgiving we raise.
Our sins now confessing, we pray for your blessing,
To you, our great Redeemer, forever be praise!”

Hear the hymn played on organ at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPlPtJ0iZW8

“Come, Let us Sing” (VU #222)

“Come, let us sing to the Lord our song,
We have stood silently too long;psalms_95-1.jpg
Surely the Lord deserves our praise,
So joyfully thank God for our days.

O thirsty soul, come drink at the well;
God’s living waters will never fail.
Sure the Lord will help you to stand,
Strengthened and comforted by God’s hand.

You dwell among us and cause us to pray,
And walk with each other following your way;
Our precious brothers and sisters will grow
In the fulfilling love they know.

Deserts shall bloom and mountains shall sing
To the desire of all living things.
Come, all you creatures, high and low,
Let your praises endlessly flow.”

This song of praise and thanksgiving was written by Jim and Jean Strathdee in 1976.  The lyrics bring to mind both the psalms of praise and the story of the people of Israel from the book of Exodus.

Hear a recording of the song at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Zs9o82P_so

“Thanks Canon”

“Praise and thanksgiving, sing alleluia.
Thanks for the food we eat and for the friends we meet;
For each new day we greet, alleluia.

Sing and give thanks, praises we bring;
Sing and give thanks, praises we sing.” 

This week’s anthem is a traditional German canon, arranged with new Thanksgiving words by Donald Moore (2005).

“Give Thanks, My Soul, for Harvest” (VU #522)   

“Give thanks, my soul, for harvest, for store of fruit and grain,
But know the owner gives so that we may share again.
Where people suffer hunger, or little children cry,
With gifts from God’s rich bounty may thankfulness reply.

Give thanks, my soul, for riches
Of woodland, mine, and hill,

But know that gold and timber
Are the Creator’s still.

God lends to us, as stewards,
Abundance we might share,

And thus provide earth’s children the blessing of God’s care.

Give thanks, my soul, for labours, that strength and days employ,
But know the Maker’s purpose brings toil as well as joy.
Show forth, O God, your purpose; direct our will and hand
To share your love and bounty with all in every land.”

This hymn was written in 1960 to celebrate the fortieth anniversary of the department of Stewardship and Benevolence of the National Council of Churches (USA).  As with other contemporary harvest expressions, the words draw our attention in the midst of celebration to the need for sharing of resources and care of the earth.

The words are set to the German tune, MUNICH, which was in use as early as the 16th century.  It was adapted by J.S. Bach for Cantatas 24 and 71, and by Felix Mendelssohn for his oratorio Elijah (1846).  The tune is also used for the hymn, “O Christ, the Word Incarnate” (VU #499).

Hear the melody on organ at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w30Q6jDKNZE

“Kingsford Communion Set” (MV 203-205)

“O holy, holy, holy God,
O God of time and space.
All earth and sea and sky above bear witness to your grace.
Hosanna in the highest heav’n, creation sings your praise.
And blessed is the One who comes and bears your name always!

Sing Christ has died and Christ is risen, Christ will come again!
Sing Christ has died and Christ is risen, Christ will come again!

Amen, amen, O Holy One!
Hosanna and Amen!
Amen, amen, O Holy One!
Hosanna and Amen!”

This communion set by William S. Kervin and Paul Stott (2005) is comprised of the Sanctus and Benedictus, the Memorial Acclamation and the Great Amen of our communion liturgy. The music is the tradition English/Irish melody, KINGSFOLD.

 “When We Gather at the Table” (MV #198)

“Jesus offers our thanksgiving blessing God for life we’re given.
From the earth comes grain to feed us watered by the rains of heaven.

Come, invited, now draw nearer, join this holy celebration.
Here be strengthened, called to justice, living now God’s new creation.”

This communion hymn was written by Walter Farquharson in 1995 and set to music by Ron Klusmeier in 2006. This week you will be hearing verses 2 and 5 as we take communion.

“Give Thanks, My Soul, for Harvest” (VU #522)   

“Give thanks, my soul, for harvest, for store of fruit and grain,
But know the owner gives so that we may share again.
Where people suffer hunger, or little children cry,
With gifts from God’s rich bounty may thankfulness reply.

Give thanks, my soul, for riches of woodland, mine, and hill,
But know that gold and timber are the Creator’s still.
God lends to us, as stewards, abundance we might share,
And thus provide earth’s children the blessing of God’s care.

Give thanks, my soul, for labours, that strength and days employ,
But know the Maker’s purpose brings toil as well as joy.
Show forth, O God, your purpose; direct our will and hand
To share your love and bounty with all in every land.”

Our closing hymn has words written by William Watkins Reid, Sr. (1960).  As with other contemporary harvest expressions, the text draws our attention, in the midst of celebration, to the need for sharing of resources and care of the earth and its peoples.  The tune is MUNICH, from the Meiningishces Gesanguch (1693), harmonized by Felix Mendelssohn in 1847.

“For the Harvests of the Spirit” (VU #227 v. 3)

For the harvests of the Spirit, thanks be to God.
For the good we all inherit, thanks be to God.
For the wonders that astound us, for the truths that still confound us,
Most of all that love has found us, thanks be to God.”

This week we gather virtually in praise and thanksgiving for God’s goodness.  The words for this harvest hymn were written by Fred Pratt Green in 1970.  We will be using the third verse as our benediction response.  The words have been set to the traditional Welsh song “Ar Hyd Y Nos (All Through the Night), which was arranged as a hymn tune by Ralph Vaughan Williams in 1906.

To ponder:

What are you thankful for?

Posted in Notes on the Notes on October 10, 2020.