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Picking hymns...

... for a week on Sunday, as you do (or I do anyway) using the trusty tool that is HymnQuest and I spotted this one, which I won't be using, but it made me pause...



The trouble with many of our churches
is that they are not singing the blues.
The trouble with its staunch belongers
is the detached way they watch the news.
The trouble with our Sunday buildings
is people staying glued to their pews.

The problem with religious people?
They can't read graffiti on the wall,
they argue finer point of dogma,
their ears are too full to hear the Call.
The problem with those holy people
is that they are too sure they won't fall.

So many males, mitred in splendour,
are stifling their passion like a yawn,
telling peace-makers they should 'cool it',
huddling in prayer while earth is going-gone.
The holy people in procession
are leading (having) us on and on and on and on....

No wonder Christ wept for the city,
over the rulers and Pharisees,
he sings the blues of love and struggle:
'If only you knew the way of peace'.
He still calls his people to follow,
to fight against death and make a feast!

Fred Kaan (born 1929)   
© 1985 Stainer & Bell Ltd


Fred Kaan died just a few weeks back, so no more gems like this from his pen.  May he rest in peace, and we be stirred to hear God's voice.


  • They are great words. Mind you, they aren't easy to sing to a blues tune!

  • I am using one of his hymns for Rememberance - had fun finding a tune given I don't read music! Thank goodness for the internet!

  • For the healing of the nations....?

    Which I am using and have just spotted that the BPW set tune is not the one I learned it to, not that it matters. The tune Rhuddlan is a good (alternative) one to use, well known and upbeat.

  • God! As with silent hearts we bring to mind
    how hate and war diminish humankind,
    we pause - and seek in worship to increase
    our knowledge of the things that make for peace.

    Hallow our will as humbly we recall
    the lives of those who gave and give their all.
    We thank you, Lord, for women, children, men
    who seek to serve in love, today as then.

    Give us deep faith to comfort those who mourn,
    high hope to share with all the newly born,
    strong love in our pursuit of human worth:
    'lest we forget' the future of this earth.

    So, Prince of Peace, disarm our trust in power,
    teach us to coax the plant of peace to flower.
    May we, impassioned by your living Word,
    remember forward to a world restored.

    Fred Kaan (1929—2009)
    © 1997 Stainer & Bell Ltd
    10 10.10 10.

    I am using Toulon for tune

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