25 Oct 2020

Hymns on Sunday, 25 October 2020

From Hymns On Sunday, 4:20 am on 25 October 2020

This audio is not downloadable due to copyright restrictions.

In Hymns on Sunday this week, you can hear 'one of the most perfect tunes in existence'. That's how composer Hubert Parry described the traditional Irish tune Londonderry Air, paired here with Timothy Dudley-Smith's hymn O Christ the same. Also in the programme, there's a tale of hymn book printing shenanigans from the 17th century.

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Photo: Creative Commons - Julia Schwab


Artist: Cantus Choro
Words/Music: Baxter/Darwall
Recording: Move 743142

Ye holy angels bright,
who wait at God's right hand,
or through the realms of light
fly at your Lord's command,
assist our song,
for else the theme
too high doth seem
for mortal tongue.

Ye blessed souls at rest,
who ran this earthly race
and now, from sin released,
behold your saviour's face,
his praises sound,
as in his sight
with sweet delight
ye do abound.

Ye saints, who toil below,
adore your heavenly King,
and onward as ye go
some joyful anthem sing;
take what he gives
and praise him still,
through good or ill,
who ever lives.

My soul, bear thou thy part,
triumph in God above:
and with a well-tuned heart
sing thou the songs of love!
Let all thy days
till life shall end,
whate'er he send,
be filled with praise!


Artist: Jubilate Singers
Words/Music: Anon, Osler/Redhead
Recording: Private CD 809

Praise the Lord! ye heav'ns, adore Him;
Praise Him, angels, in the height.
Sun and moon, rejoice before Him;
Praise Him, all ye stars of light.

Praise the Lord! for He hath spoken;
Worlds His mighty voice obeyed.
Laws that never shall be broken
For their guidance hath He made.

Praise the Lord for He is glorious;
Never shall His promise fail.
God hath made His saints victorious;
Sin and death shall not prevail.

Praise the God of our salvation!
Hosts on high, His power proclaim,
Heav'n and earth and all creation
Laud and magnify His name.


Artist: Scottish Philharmonic Singers, Ian McCrorie (dir), John Langdon (organ)
Words/Music: Paraphrase by Barton/Anon
Recording: Abbey 282830

O thou my soul, bless God the Lord;
and all that in me is
Be stirred up his holy name
to magnify and bless.

Bless, O my soul, the Lord thy God,
and not forgetful be
Of all his gracious benefits
he hath bestow’d on thee.

All thine iniquities who doth
most graciously forgive:
Who thy diseases all and pains
doth heal, and thee relieve.

Who doth redeem thy life, that thou
to death may’st not go down;
Who thee with loving-kindness doth
and tender mercies crown:

Who with abundance of good things
doth satisfy thy mouth;
So that, ev’n as the eagle’s age,
renewed is thy youth.


Artist: Otago Girls’ High School Choir
Words/Music: Trad
Recording: RNZ

Tama ngākau mārie
Tama a te Atua
Tēnei tonu mātou
Arohaina mai

Murua rā ngā hara
Wetekina mai
Ēnei here kino
Wakararu nei.

Tama ngākau mārie
Tama a te Atua
Tēnei tonu mātou
Arohaina mai.

Son of peace
Son of God
here we are always.
Show us compassion.

Wipe away our sins,
and unshackle
these evil ties
that are so troublesome.

Son of peace
Son of God
here we are always.
Show us compassion.


Artist: Choir of St John’s, Elora
Words/Music: Crossman/Ireland
Recording: Naxos 8.557037

My song is love unknown,
My saviour’s love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I, that for my sake
My Lord should take frail flesh and die?

He came from his blest throne
Salvation to bestow;
But men made strange, and none
The longed-for Christ would know:
But O! my friend, my friend indeed,
Who at my need his life did spend.

Sometimes they strew His way,
And His sweet praises sing;
Resounding all the way
Hosannas to their King:
Then “Crucify!” is all their breath,
And for His death they thirst and cry.

They rise and needs will have
my dear Lord made away;
a murderer they save;
the Prince of Life they slay.
yet cheerful he to suffering goes
that he his foes from thence might free.

Here might I stay and sing,
No story so divine;
Never was love, dear King!
Never was grief like thine.
This is my friend, in whose sweet praise
I all my days could gladly spend.


Artist: Choir of Belfast Cathedral
Words/Music: O’Driscoll/Vaughan Williams
Recording: Priory PRCD 826

Who are we who stand and sing?
We are God’s people
What this wine and bread we bring?
Food for God’s people
As once with twelve Christ spake
Poured wine, and bread did break.
He now of us will make a faithful people.

What command does Christ impart
To us his people?
Soul and strength and mind and heart
Serve me my people
As he in love came low,
Our world and work to know,
To life he bids us go to be his people

Who are we who say one creed?
We are God’s people
What the word we hear and read?
Word of God’s people
Through time in every race
From earth to farthest space
We’ll be with Christ’s good grace a faithful people.


Artist: Choir of Portsmouth Cathedral
Words/Music: Dudley-Smith/Trad 
Recording: Herald HAVPCD 205 

O Christ the same, through all our story's pages, 
our loves and hopes, our failures and our fears; 
eternal Lord, the King of all the ages, 
unchanging still, amid the passing years: 
O living Word, the source of all creation, 
who spread the skies, and set the stars ablaze; 
O Christ the same, who wrought our whole salvation, 
we bring our thanks for all our yesterdays. 
O Christ the same, the friend of sinners, sharing 
our inmost thoughts, the secrets none can hide; 
still as of old upon your body bearing 
the marks of love, in triumph glorified: 
O Son of Man, who stooped for us from heaven, 
O Prince of life, in all your saving power, 
O Christ the same, to whom our hearts are given, 
we bring our thanks for this the present hour. 
O Christ the same, secure within whose keeping 
our lives and loves, our days and years remain, 
our work and rest, our waking and our sleeping, 
our calm and storm, our pleasure and our pain: 
O Lord of love, for all our joys and sorrows, 
for all our hopes, when earth shall fade and flee, 
O Christ the same, beyond our brief tomorrows, 
we bring our thanks for all that is to be.  


Artist: Choir of Portsmouth Cathedral
Words/Music: Dudley-Smith/Baughen
Recording: Herald HAVPCD

Lord, for the years your love has kept and guided,
urged and inspired us, cheered us on our way,
sought us and saved us, pardoned and provided:
Lord of the years, we bring our thanks today.

Lord, for that word, the word of life which fires us,
speaks to our hearts and sets our souls ablaze,
teaches and trains, rebukes us and inspires us:
Lord of the word, receive Your people's praise.

Lord, for our land in this our generation,
spirits oppressed by pleasure, wealth and care:
for young and old, for commonwealth and nation,
Lord of our land, be pleased to hear our prayer.

Lord, for our world when we disown and doubt him,
loveless in strength, and comfortless in pain,
hungry and helpless, lost indeed without him:
Lord of the world, we pray that Christ may reign.

Lord for ourselves; in living power remake us -
self on the cross and Christ upon the throne,
past put behind us, for the future take us:
Lord of our lives, to live for Christ alone.


Artist: Choir of Belfast Cathedral
Words/Music: Anon/Trad arr Stanford
Recording: Priory PRCD 826

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.