21 January 2008

Days and Hymns

Pr. Lehmann made me write this one. It's just my notion of what days you HAVE to sing certain hymns on. It's not a complete list, but it is a start, and I'd welcome other thoughts. It's not that these hymns are necessarily the best or the greatest for a given day, but that (at least at St. Paul's, Hamel) these hymns are EXPECTED on a given day, remembering we use the historic or one-year lectionary:

Easter - don't even think about skipping "Jesus Christ is Risen Today, Alleluia" or "I Know that My Redeemer Lives."

Easter II - you have to do "O Sons and Daughters" and use the Vulpius tune - the other one won't fly here.

Easter III - "The King of Love" with the tune from LW.

Ascension - "On Christ's Ascension" is a must.

Pentecost - "Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord" simply HAS to be the hymn of the day.

Trinity - "Glory be to God the Father" better be in there somewhere.

Trinity I - Who could think of skipping "Lord, Thee I Love"

Last Sunday after Trinity - "Wake, Awake," what else?

Advent I - "Savior of the Nations" reigns supreme

Advent IV - "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel" must NOT be monkeyed with

Christmas Day - if you get in "O Come, All Ye Faithful," "Angels We Have Heard on High" and "Joy to the World" you are playing it safe. If you can convince them that a Christmas without "Of the Father's Love" is unthinkable, blessed are you!

New Year's Eve - you MUST sing "Our God, our Help" and "Across the Sky" - and on the last one LSB really improved the words.

Epiphany - I HATE the hymns for Epiphany, but you have to sing them: "Brightest and Best" and "As With Gladness" - but I put up with them because the Hymn of the Day has to be "O Morning Star" and that more than makes up for sentimental 19th century tunes and text.

Epiphany I - "The Star Proclaims" is a must.

Transfiguration - here is one that I insist on: "O Wondrous Type" - congregation is still in the learning to love it phase. But they WILL love it; it's not really an option. Such a great text wedded to that great Agincourt tune.

Lenten Services - the great chorales "Jesus, I will Ponder Now," "A Lamb Alone" and "Ah, Dearest Jesus" are all musts somewhere along the line.

Palm Sunday - besides the opening "All Glory" you HAVE to get in there "Ride On, Ride On" with the old TLH/LSB tune.

Good Friday - "O Sacred Head" is not optional

And we're about where we started. There are others, but those are the "must sing" hymns that come to my mind for the Church year. Do you have others?

27 comments:

Presbytera said...

Trinity Sunday We All Believe in One True God with the Latin Credo tune if you please : )

Pr. Lehmann said...

At Saint Paul I also think you'd have a real hard time if you didn't sing "The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came" during Advent.

William Weedon said...

Pr. Lehmann,

Indeed! AND more than once. It is probably THE most requested Advent/Christmas hymn in the hymns sings, as you know.

necessaryroughness.org said...

"Lamb of God, Pure and Holy", for Good Friday, if one isn't already using it in the Chief Service. :)

That's just a wish of mine, anyway. My first church preferred the choir singing "Were You There" while the sanctuary was completely dark.

Jimbo said...

in 2006 I learned that "It's not Christmas Eve if we do not sing Silent Night"

Rev. Richard A. Heinz said...

Not only must you sing "Silent Night" at Christmas Eve, but it MUST be the FINAL hymn for the night. In my first parish we sang it, but placed it earlier in the service. I was nearly drawn & quartered! :-)

William Weedon said...

LOL. How could I have forgotten that one? That is obvious. Let me add some more:

at 7:00 p.m. service, it must be the last hymn, but the first stanza must be in German, and it must be the first stanza listed at the very bottom of the page in the LSB - the one that came from Liederperlen.

And at midnight, it MUST be sung to candlelight as the last hymn. These are the laws of the Medes and the Persians!

William Weedon said...

Oh, and I forgot, at 7:00 the Bell Choir MUST introduce the piece and play along.

And at St. Paul's, the Pastor CAN try to substitute another version of the Magnificat for the David Haas "Holy Is Your Name" - but he WILL pay. To St. Paul's, "Holy Is Your Name" is THE song for Vespers. A year or two ago, this was hit home to me by one of our less musical members sadly saying to me at after the last Passion Vespers, "No more Holy Is Your Name until Advent."

William Weedon said...

Funny thing about "The Angel Gabriel"? My first year here, I brought it to the Adult Choir and ask them to learn it. They said it was too hard and they didn't like it and that was that. When it came out in HS 98, I just taught it to the congregation and it was a smash hit from year one, especially among the youngsters, who ask for it REGULARLY at the hymn sing.

Another weird thing about the hymn sing (we hold this before the Advent and Lenten Vespers) - the KIDS almost never stray from the season; it's the ADULTS who do. The kids will call out Advent hymns in Advent and Lenten Hymns in Lent. Go figure.

Pr. Lehmann said...

You've more thoroughly corrupted the children than you have the parents.

Rebekah said...

This was one of the worst parts about the church of my youth going contemporary--all the right hymns for the right days went away. So I can't go back home for what I consider the perfect Easter or any other day; it just doesn't exist any more since every church does it a little bit differently. Broke my poor lil heart! :(

orrologion said...

"A Mighty Fortress" for Reformation, of course.

William Weedon said...

Yes, of course. How did I leave that out? And "For all the Saints" for All Saints!

orrologion said...

Well, it's understandable since it isn't in the historic calendar or lectionary... :)

William Weedon said...

Oh, fiddlesticks! The Church Calendar doesn't cease back in the 5th century! The Eastern Calendar added the new martyrs to it; and you observe folks like St. Seraphim of Sarov, no? The Church's ongoing pilgrimage through time means that there will be additions to the calendar.

orrologion said...

Ha! You are right. The EP added September 1 as a commemoration of the environment - in addition to the ecclesiastical New Year and St. Symeon Stylides. Each new saint is also added - recent saints being Sts. Silouan the Athonite, John of Kronstadt, John of Shanghai and San Francisco, the Royal New Martyrs and the 1000s of Russian New Martyrs canonized since 1991. The only Reformations we celebrate are the Sunday of Orthodoxy commemorating the restoration of the icons in churches, which is 8th C, not 5th. :)

William Weedon said...

See, we have the feast of the REFORMATION and you have the feast of the DECORATION. ;)

orrologion said...

Decoration? I didn't think I was dealing with an iconoclast Calvinist, but you Protestants (ha!) all look alike after awhile. Prescription: 1 John Damascene and 1 Theodore Studite and call me in the morning.

William Weedon said...

Well, I hope you noticed the ;)

Christopher Palo said...

For Pascha (Easter) why no suggestion (or demand) for St. John Damascene's anasteos hemera (Day of Resurrection) especially if you sing it in Byzantine Tone 1? Great stuff.

orrologion said...

I did, sorry if I came off differently. Reformation vs. Decoration was a good one.

William Weedon said...

Now, Christopher P., you KNOW that we HAVE to sing the Day of Resurrection to the tune Lancashire or it's just not Easter either, right? ;)

William Weedon said...

By the bye, to my Orthodox friends, it is just not Easter to me if I don't get to hear (and sing along with) "The Angel Cried to the Lady Full of Grace" - we've used that lovely piece here at St. Paul's before. "With Himself He has raised all the dead!"

Anonymous said...

CANTATE SUNDAY....

Luther's greatest hymn -- "Dear
Christians, One and All, Rejoice!"

William Weedon said...

That IS Luther's greatest hymn - hands down. And we DO sing it at Cantate.

Anonymous said...

2nd Last Sunday of the Church Year:

"Day of Wrath, O Day of Mourning"
(Dies Irae)

.... a shame it is only in TLH

William Weedon said...

Agreed. But at least the "chorale paraphrase" is in LSB: "The Day Is Surely Drawing Near." Still, it hasn't the force of the old Dies Irae, does it?