Now this could be really risky but one of my all time unfavourite hymns was tonight described by the preacher at D+1 as the 'Baptist International Anthem.' Having sung it at the close of the BWA last year, I'm sure he's right but I really cannot abide it! Is it because it seems decidely mawkish? Is it because I know the history of it (which is pretty mawkish!)? Is it because it seemed to reduce previously quite sane people to tears at the BWA bash? Is it because what it expresses is so far removed from any reality I've encountered in church life anywhere? Is it because the usual tune (not the original) is so 'hurdy gurdy'? Or am I just an unredeemable heretic who ought to be drummed out immediately?
The hymn is 'Blest be the tie the binds' written by John Fawcett for his last service before leaving a Bradford church. Seemingly having sung it they were all in floods of tears and he decided to stay on. A year or so ago that church closed its doors for the last time. Maybe there's a message there somewhere.
Dibley also has a home grown 19th century hymn writer whose works have yet to be embraced by the wider Baptist communion and whose works also feature on my unfavourite hymns list. Just beware any hymns that speak of 'hearts all on fire' and 'voices melting' especially when sung on a hot June afternoon!
So, does anyone want to add their own unfavourites?!
I do appreciate that all hymns/songs are the authentic expression of the writer's worship and I am not meaning to 'diss' the stuff I don't like. There are things on my unfavourites list whose theology I endorse wholeheartedly and things I enjoy singing that I can't - it never seems to be quite as easy as the 'lex orandi, lex credendi' claims some people make about hymnody.