Plans for a Symposium Exploring Congregational Song

The Congregational Song Committee of the SCLM is planning a symposium on congregational song, tentatively scheduled for October 2018. The event will be designed to solicit and disseminate recently composed hymns and songs and less-known materials appropriate for liturgical use. Check back for more updates in late 2017.

3 thoughts on “Plans for a Symposium Exploring Congregational Song

  1. Here is a Noah’s Arc Story Pageant originally celebrated May 2009 at Church of the Atonement Tenafly NJ and bi-annually since then. It serves to strengthen spiritual understanding especially for families with children.
    Nine standard Hymns have been given different words that support the story.
    Beginning – Narrator: A reading from the book of Genesis
    It was after the beginning;
    The earth had become populated with many peoples. Then God
    looked down and saw that the wickedness of humankind was great.
    Hymn 9 Music: Morning Song, melody att. Elkanah Kelsay Dare (1782-1826)
    Consider all of the life on earth, its glory, power, and might
    Of the creatures on sea and air and land, which should bring
    happy delight. But of men, with dominion over all, they’ve chosen
    wrong over right. The evilness of humanity, of thought and
    word and deed, The corruption of hearts and souls is much,
    Its time to intercede. To remove all from earth and start anew,
    so good may finally lead.

    Narrative continues
    – So the Lord said, “I will blot out from the earth all that I
    have created — people together with animals and creeping
    things and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have
    made them.” But Noah found favor in the sight of the Lord.

    American Folk Hymn 439 Music: Wondrous Love, from The Southern Harmony, 1835
    There still must be a soul that is pure, that is pure,
    a man who will endure to be met. A blameless patriarch,
    to fabricate my ark, and carry two of each from the wet,
    from the wet, and carry two of each from the wet.
    The size of this great ship is unique, is unique, three
    hundred cubits long, fifty wide. On cypress wood rely, and
    pitch to keep all dry, and doors to access decks on the side,
    on the side, and doors to access decks on the side.
    All creatures great and small from the land, from the land,
    will join his floating band for a trip.
    The male and female pairs, will climb the gang-plank stairs,
    and weather out the storm in the ship, in the ship,
    and weather out the storm in the ship.

    Narrative continues
    Then the Lord said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and all your
    household, for I have seen that you alone are righteous before me
    in this generation. Take with you pairs of all the animals and birds,
    male and female to keep their kind alive on the face of the earth.

    Hymn 405 Music: Royal Oak, melody from The Dancing Master, 1686,
    adapt. Martin Fallas Shaw (1875-1958); some Words: Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-1895),
    Refrain: : desc. Richard Proulx (b. 1937)
    All things bright and beau-ti-ful, all creatures great and small,
    All things wise and wonderful, the Lord God made them all.
    Each little kitten’s a meow-er (meow!),
    each li–ttle doggy that barks (bark, bark!)
    Every one is loved by the Lord our God,
    they all have room in the ark.
    – Refrain –
    The purple plumes of the peacock,
    hyenas that laugh with delight (hee hee hee!)
    We have lions, tigers, and bears (oh, my!)
    and they all provide quite a sight.
    – Refrain –
    The little lambs that are bleating (baa!),
    the donkeys that carry a pack (Hee Haw!)
    Hens an’ roosters crow (Err er roo, Err er roo!),
    and the ducks that waddle and quack (quack!)
    – Refrain –
    The animals of the barnyard (chicken, cow, goat sounds!),
    The stallion and mare will say neigh (neigh!),
    We will round them up for this wondrous cruise,
    pull the plank and then sail away.
    – Refrain –
    Narrative continues
    God said, “I will send rain on the earth for forty days and
    forty nights; and every living thing that I have made I will
    blot out from the face of the ground.” Noah with his sons and
    his wife and all the pairs of animals were in the ark as God had
    commanded. Then the windows of heaven opened, and the
    fountains of the great deep burst forth, the waters swelled so
    mightily on the earth that all the high mountains under the
    whole heaven were covered; As the waters increased, they
    bore up the ark, until it rose high above the earth, floating
    on the face of the waters.

    Hymn 150 Music: Aus der Tiefe rufe ich, melody att. Martin Herbst (1654-1681),
    Alt. harm. William Henry Monk (1823-1889) some Words: George Hunt Smyttan (1822-1870),
    Forty days and forty nights, sky went dark and clouds were
    wild, God poured rain from heavenly heights, and to earth no
    longer smiled. Water flooded all below, creatures died in
    undertow. All except on Noah’s boat, sole survivors kept afloat.
    God will steer them be their guide, keep them safely ever
    dear. Sailing smooth above the tide, ’till again the sun appear.

    Narrative continues
    God remembered Noah and all the wild and domestic animals
    that were with him in the ark. And God made the wind blow
    over the earth, and the waters subsided; the fountains of the
    deep and the rain from the heavens was restrained, and the
    waters gradually receded from the earth. At the end of one
    hundred and fifty days the waters had abated; and in the
    seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month,
    the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.

    Hymn 558 Music: St. Catherine,Henri Frederic Hemy (1818-1888),
    adapt. And arr. James G Walton (1821-1905)
    Faithfully floating o’er turbulent tide, steadfast in storm
    on ocean and sea. Safe in our boat till the waters subside;
    You are our Lord, our duty to thee; ~ Faith on the waters,
    holy faith! Show us the way and keep us safe.
    Faith in our mission and faithful in prayer; Favored with hope of
    vows we have heard. We will be calm with no thoughts of despair;
    Patient and true to thy Holy Word. ~ Faith on the waters,
    holy faith! Please may we land; You’ll keep us safe.

    Narrative continues
    – At the end of forty days Noah sent out the dove to see if the
    waters had subsided from the face of the ground; but the dove
    found no place to set his foot, and it returned to the ark. Noah
    waited seven days and again he sent out the dove from the ark;
    and the dove came back to him in the evening and there in its beak
    was a freshly plucked olive leaf.; so Noah knew that the waters
    had subsided from the earth. Then he waited another seven days,
    and sent out the dove; and it did not return to him any more.

    Hymn 554 Music: Simple Gifts, Shaker melody 18th cent.
    Fly away little birdie, fly away o’re the sea,
    let us know if there is land on which to be,
    and when you may return from the cloudy sky,
    please bring us a sign of a place that is dry.
    Friend we enlist you’re help again,
    to fly or’e sea and find leaf from a tree,
    return, learn a place of delight,
    fill our burning, yearning for land and light.

    Narrative continues
    Then God said to Noah, ” Go out of the ark, you and your wife,
    and your sons, and your sons’ wives with you. Bring out with
    you every living thing that is with you of all flesh – birds and
    animals and every thing that creeps on the earth–so that they
    may abound on the earth, be fruitful, and multiply.”

    Hymn 199 Music: St. Kevin, Arthur Seymour Sullivan (1842-1900),
    orig words: John of Damascus (8th cent.); tr. John Mason Neale (1818-1866)
    Come ye faith-ful, raise in song of tri-um-phant gladness!
    God’s delivered us from the flood, and a world of badness:
    Now we’re praising with gratitude, to be off of the waters.
    Now the promise of earth renewed,
    for our sons and daughters.
    ‘Tis the season to till the land; plant the seeds and nourish.
    Raise the animals, birds and beast; teach and feed and flourish.
    All our challenges in the ark, now are gone with the landing,
    Now in peace we all go forth, with Gods understanding.

    Narrative continues
    Then Noah built an altar to the Lord, and offered
    burnt offerings on the altar.

    Hymn 388 Music: Hanover, att. William Croft (1678-1727)
    – – – congregation to join in singing – – –
    O worship the Lord, all mighty on high!
    Brought rain for the floods, and sunshine to dry.
    Thy power to save us from mankind’s disgrace,
    And bring us here safely to this blessed place.
    O children of God, all animals too,
    Give thanks for this world, to share and renew.
    We bring you our tribute, our offer of praise,
    And pledge you our prayers to the end of our days.

    Bulletin excel file, choir music with words, and other pageant notes available
    upon request. Faithfully submitted, Jeff Pieper 201-469-7616 EST.

  2. The link wouldn’t allow me to comment (‘page not found’), but I do want to say how glad I am to read about this. I hope ‘symposium’ implies some teaching or discussion of the practice of congregational song, as well as the collection of new hymns; the huge majority of those responsible for music in the Episcopal Church appear to think their responsibility is leading the music of the choir rather than leading the sung praise of the whole people of God.

    I look forward to more details.

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