Global Warming Hymn
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,662
    I've been hoping that one of the mainstream publishers would publish a new hymn text to the tune JERUSALEM (LMD) for a while now. I was excited when I saw one in the new edition of GIA Quarterly, but the text is all wrong for the tune...

    Can you actually see a congregation standing up and singing, with gusto, this text?

    What new endeavors will we dare
    To steward water, soil and air,
    When thirst for pow'r and warring greed
    Drive us to live beyond our need?
    Within the ever-changing might
    Of rushing wind and streams of light,
    God gives us pow'r to change our ways
    And save the earth for future days.

    Will changing climate, searing drought,
    And melting glaciers end our doubt?
    This web of life we live within
    Is vuln'rable to human sin.
    Creation groaned as Jesus died:
    The planet shook, the heavens cried.
    Yet Love, which sin could not destroy
    Forgives and shakes the earth with joy.

    Though still we tear life's web apart,
    God weaves again this work of art.
    And if we tear, so we must mend
    And save what God gives us to tend.
    Earth yearns for peace that God demands,
    And justice grown by human hands.
    As Eden was, yet earth will be:
    God's garden, yielding harmony.

    It's by Adam M. L. Tice.
  • Erik P
    Posts: 152
    .
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Adam's craftmanship is excellent. I like the directness of his declarative sentences. He is able to compress a sermon into syntactically reasonable metered rhyme--a rare skill. Look at most hymns written over the last half century. Most are lacking clarity or evenness of one kind or another. Adam is a master craftsman. The seams don't show.

    It's not a liturgical hymn, though, and I wouldn't call it prayer. It's an exhortation. It's directive, and to my ear it is a little odd to ask a congregation to sing an exhortation, presumably preaching to themselves.

    Carl Daw's O Day of Peace (Worship III) is a *somewhat* less directive text for Jerusalem.
    Of course, Blake's And Did Those Feet is very preachy...
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,662
    I agree Kathy, about Adam's craftmanship of text..

    I was just hoping for a good liturgical text for this tune...
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    matthewj,

    Any particular Scripture passage or theological idea in particular? I might give it a try.
  • ossian1898ossian1898
    Posts: 142
    For some reason...I hear it in my head to Old 100th. If a pastor asked me to play this hymn at Mass, I would probably reject on matters of conscience.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    The Evangelical theologian Francis Schaeffer used to observe how trends in the worlds of ideas moved through sectors of society: they would start in literature and philosophy, be adopted by editorial writers, enter into mass circulation and pop-culture, and finally, when they were dying elsewhere, they would be adopted in the world of religion. So too with this.
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,662
    Kathy,

    I'd love just a general hymn of praise to use this tune as a recessional hymn. To my knowledge, none exist.
  • Pure (and well-crafter) politics.
  • Showed this to a parishioner, and he remarked that several years before my tenure at our church, the existing music director (with the Pastor's blessing, mind you) put together a presentation during Stations of the Cross that involved dressing kids up in various environmental themes and spoke about the message that we are killing the environment.

    Let me say that again: for Stations of the Cross. I was speechless.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Here's something basic and simple. Another kind of global consciousness.

    Let all the world give praise to God
    Who made the heavens and the earth
    He lit the stars and spread the skies
    And brought the shining worlds to birth.
    He sets the limits of the seas.
    He calls the sun and stars by name,
    And when the times had been fulfilled
    Into the earth He made, He came.

    Let every heart give thanks to God
    Whose Christ for us became a slave
    And to their Holy Spirit blest
    Whose might can raise us from the grave;
    Who sent the Twelve throughout the world
    To bear the water and the word
    Bend every knee at Jesus' name.
    Let every tongue proclaim Him Lord.

    Another option would be to use an iambic LM text, and join pairs of verses.
  • G
    Posts: 1,391
    Basic and simple or not, excellent, Kathy

    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)
  • Donnaswan
    Posts: 585
    Why are we subjected to pusillanimous , weak-kneed , plebeian hymns in our Catholic hymnals when we have people like Kathy writing glorious stuff?
    Donna
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Actually, now is the moment to make one's needs known to publishers. All the major hymnal publishers are revising, or are considering revising.

    I bet they hear from people who are delighted with the poetry of Adam and others. They might not realize how many people like more stately texts with more traditional theological concepts expressed in elevated diction using biblical images.

    I sure wish somebody would tell them...
  • As memory serves, there was a text set to FINLANDIA that predates the topic hymn that was an exhortation to be stewards of earth published by one of the three, WLP?

    I'm sorry, Kathy, but I can't see a pulp hymnal that just last year unleashed "Women of the Church" (Landry) to compliment "Sing a New Church" and "Gather and Remember" being receptive to anything that doesn't have Dufner or Glen attributions.
  • David AndrewDavid Andrew
    Posts: 1,193
    I simply don't know how to comment about the text presented here.

    We may just as well have our congregations sing this while showing them footage from Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth".

    "When thirst for pow'r and warring greed Drive us to live beyond our need?"

    Changing climate? Searing drought? Melting glaciers?

    Hasn't anyone kept up? The "hockey stick" graph was proven to be a lie; the cover-up and blatant manipulation of data that runs contrary to template of the "global warming" peddlers has been exposed. The biggest fraud perpetuated on modern society is collapsing daily, and we find a hymn text that engages in some kind of moral flagellation for our sins against creation?

    The text is pure politics, and I find the fact that it has received even couched acceptance on this board for craftsmanship to be troubling.
  • Donnaswan
    Posts: 585
    Dittos from me, David Andrew. Pure hogwash.
    I was complimenting Kathy's hymn text, not that PC stuff at the top of this page.
    Donna
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    But Adam's craftsmanship IS remarkable. This couplet, for example, is very fine:

    Creation groaned as Jesus died:
    The planet shook, the heavens cried.
  • Chrism
    Posts: 770
    So where's the Gulf Oil Spill hymn?
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Chrism,

    Watch this page: http://www.hymnsocietygbi.org.uk/
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Chrism,

    Watch this page: http://www.hymnsocietygbi.org.uk/

    Or google "oil spill" hymn.
  • Donnaswan
    Posts: 585
    Yes, I like that part. I am all in favor of conserving actually. I just don't think Al Gore and the "Global Warming caused by humans is going to destroy the earth in 50 years theory" is true.

    Donna
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,662
    Two favorite quotes from the Oil Spill Hymn:
    "Consuming more than what we should,
    We harm the waters you call good."
    "For those who work to stop the spill
    Of all that would destroy and kill,"
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    This is the direction in which hymnody has been heading for decades. The RotR doesn't encourage hymnody at all, so why wouldn't the form become more progressive?
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,289
    The hymn is pure dribble. Another counterfeit in the world of sacred music. Cept this one used the defective green ink so his shorts are showing.
  • G
    Posts: 1,391
    I think the trendiness and bending over backwards to be au courant rather than timeless in our liturgical song, (rather than in devotional, where it belongs,) is of a piece with the part of the Mass called the Specific Intercessions, (or so it seems so often,, when we pray them after the Creed.)

    We don't just tell God our concerns, ("for [X, Y and Z]......,") we go on to tell Him what WE, (or at least the person writing the petitions,) think He should do about them, ("that God may [do A, B & C].....")!

    Even when we talk or sing corporately about sin, someone wants us, rather than sticking to the 7 Deadlies, or 10 Commandments, or the However Many There Are Woes there are that follow the Beatitudes to agree with him about where he thinks (prudentially,) the world is going wrong.

    Even when I agree with the politics inherent in some of the Prayers of the Faithful to which I have asked to give assent, it grates.

    Can you imagine the uproar if a hymntext that, say decried failing to fund national defense sufficiently as Greed were published? or apologizing for the sacrilege of elevating the rights of animals to the same level as the rights of human beings made in the image and likeness of God?

    Hmmmm.... I feel the need for a hymn about the virtues of Fair Trade Chocolate coming on.

    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)
  • Routley would probably have benchmarked the "au courant" phenom sometime around Fred Pratt Green, the Dutch boys and Brian Wren.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    The Hymn Society of the United States and Canada holds an annual hymn contest, this year on Themes of Justice and Peace: http://www.thehymnsociety.org/justice-hymnsearch09.pdf

    So does the Macalester Plymouth United Church: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macalester_Plymouth_United_Church_Hymn_Contest

    Meanwhile there are no counterbalancing initiatives, to my knowledge.
  • BachLover2BachLover2
    Posts: 331
    Within the ever-changing might Of rushing wind and streams of light, God gives us pow'r to change our ways And save the earth for future days.
    ...is remarkably politically charged....
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    "God make us all a great society,
    wherein good men can carry openly."
  • BachLover2BachLover2
    Posts: 331
    http://www.wlp.jspaluch.com/12448.htm

    This newly-revised edition presents a series of examples for liturgical dancers who desire to serve the worshiping community with beauty, dignity, and grace. Includes choreography for nine dances that may be adapted to various musical compositions, and suggestions for dress, plus the answers to questions of who, how, where, and when to dance.
    The companion video is essential for anyone preparing for sacred dance and gesture in their communities. It is set in a parish church and features young children, teens, and adults, many of whom have no formal training. It demonstrates the many possibilities for enhancing the prayerfulness and beauty of worship through this prayer form.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    Incidentally, I think Tice's text is missing a certain insight. When he writes:
    "When thirst for pow'r and warring greed / Drive us to live beyond our need"
    he is not providing a credible explanation for excessive consumption. Consumerist excesses and the love of luxury are not based on anyone's desire for power, or anyone's supposed "warring greed". He seems to be projecting the problem from "us" out to someone else whose machinations are at fault.
  • G
    Posts: 1,391
    "When thirst for pow'r and warring greed / Drive us to live beyond our need"....He seems to be projecting the problem from "us" out to someone else whose machinations are at fault.

    I just thought of another peeve of mine to which this is connected, (bear with me, or ignore if this connection seems absurd.)

    In my (mostly white, mostly eastern European in ethnicity, mostly married,) parish, initiatives that are designed as attempts at being welcoming are often, IMO, insulting, because they clearly delineate Us-Doing-The-Welcoming and You-Others-Who-Need-To-Be-Included, (for instance, in a bi-lingual program, providing phonetic spelling of only one of the languages.)

    Sometimes texts like this are not singable by, say, in this instance, "the Poor."

    What that does is further marginalize the marginalized, no?

    How much better to acknowledge that we are ALL sinners, and while excessive consumption might be the way some financially wealthy person manifests the sin of Greed, there could be other ways some financially poor person commits the same sin.

    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Content aside, his rhyme and meter are very good. He's got the knack, that's for sure!
  • Chrism
    Posts: 770
    [Deleted. Too painful.]
  • This is why metrical hymnody is characteristic of Protestantism and not Catholicism.
    Hymns about 'global warming' are simply not part of any orthodox Christian tradition.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    Chrism, your draft lyric on the oil spill was quite apt! :-)
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,314
    Daniel,

    Metrical hymnody is integral to the Divne Office.
  • I do understand that, and should have qualified my statement. I'm sorry to continue to be overly categorical. And as a former Anglican metrical hymnody is forever in my ear and my heart. We need to celebrate Sunday parish Vespers (and even Lauds!) so that we can do things right! My concern with the Protestantizing nature of much (but not all) recent hymnody is its lack of universality, 'global warming' being an example of such an a-liturgical 'topic'.
  • Maureen
    Posts: 662
    The hymn just needs some editing out of the unnecessary bits. Thus:

    This web of life we live within
    Is vuln'rable to human sin.
    Creation groaned as Jesus died:
    The planet shook, the heavens cried.
    Yet Love, which sin could not destroy
    Forgives and shakes the earth with joy.

    Though still we tear life's web apart,
    God weaves again this work of art.
    And if we tear, so we must mend
    And save what God gives us to tend.
    As Eden was, yet earth will be:
    God's garden, yielding harmony.

    I am uncomfortable with saying in a Christian hymn that we "save" the earth. Indeed, we are supposed to be co-workers with God in the work of salvation, and indeed with the redemption of Creation. Obviously it's a good idea not to run around destroying living creatures wantonly. But while we can conserve, repair, rescue, and so forth, it's Christ's death and resurrection that saved the earth.

    I don't see why the songwriter didn't talk about that, as it's an obvious take, but put all responsibility on all other humans instead. Creation didn't just groan when Jesus died; that's the whole point of the quote. So why even bring it up, if you're not going to talk about literal salvation of Creation?

    Cognitive dissonance makes my head hurt. Apparently contemporary hymnal editors are determined to give me migraines.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,392
    I have a real issue with such "on the nose" activism in the liturgy. Attempts to sing songs about social justice issues so often fall into the "after-school special" genre. My last parish liked to sing Lori True's "A Place at the Table," in which we sing, "Revising the roles, dividing the share/For woman and man, a system that's fair."
    oi vey!
    I'm a feminist, and that lyric turns my stomach.

    At that same parish, I attended one of the weirdest Stations of the Cross I've ever experienced: Each station was announced, and then followed by a short reading about South American Liberation Theology. Most of the pairings didn't even make sense (the weeping women are the poor and outcast seemed good... Jesus falls "really" because some people don't have healthcare was... ungood).
    Later at the Good Friday reading of the Passion, when the people wanted, not Jesus, but rather the revolutionary, I thought, "Yes, that's true."
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    Agreed, Maureen: the cuts you suggest are a great improvement - though perhaps in this case I can only speak of a mitigation! :)
  • JamJam
    Posts: 636
    We don't just tell God our concerns, ("for [X, Y and Z]......,") we go on to tell Him what WE, (or at least the person writing the petitions,) think He should do about them, ("that God may [do A, B & C].....")!


    St. John Chrysostom wrote some awesome ones... I always wondered if it would be possible for someone to just use those during that part of the Mass instead of writing their own. I have a Latin professor who would love that.

    Quick, perhaps off-topic question: are there official petitions to use during this time, or is it really necessary for each parish to write their own? I mean, was that the intent from the beginning? It seems like it introduces the possibility of heresy actually getting into the liturgy itself. I'm not saying that that happens, I'm just saying that the possibility is there. Unless there is some approval process I don't know about, which is why I'm asking.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,528
    Here's how the GIRM prescribes for the General Intercessions. The description is pretty general. :-)


    The Prayer of the Faithful
    69. In the Prayer of the Faithful, the people respond in a certain way to the word of God which they have welcomed in faith and, exercising the office of their baptismal priesthood, offer prayers to God for the salvation of all. It is fitting that such a prayer be included, as a rule, in Masses celebrated with a congregation, so that petitions will be offered for the holy Church, for civil authorities, for those weighed down by various needs, for all men and women, and for the salvation of the whole world.

    70. As a rule, the series of intentions is to be

    1. For the needs of the Church;
    2. For public authorities and the salvation of the whole world;
    3. For those burdened by any kind of difficulty;
    4. For the local community.

    Nevertheless, in a particular celebration, such as Confirmation, Marriage, or a Funeral, the series of intentions may reflect more closely the particular occasion.

    71. It is for the priest celebrant to direct this prayer from the chair. He himself begins it with a brief introduction, by which he invites the faithful to pray, and likewise he concludes it with a prayer. The intentions announced should be sober, be composed freely but prudently, and be succinct, and they should express the prayer of the entire community.

    The intentions are announced from the ambo or from another suitable place, by the deacon or by a cantor, a lector, or one of the lay faithful.

    The people, however, stand and give expression to their prayer either by an invocation said together after each intention or by praying in silence.

  • Maureen
    Posts: 662
    The other problem is that it's the "net" that's "not torn" in Scripture -- whereas the only webs in Scripture are spiderwebs (a symbol of the fragility of trusting in worldly things), weaver webs (with Delilah and with Job's life being cut), a web of trouble, and Death (the veil, shroud, or web that is spread over all nations). It's very problematic, when the pop culture reference is positive and the scriptural references are all so negative.