All things bright and beautiful

Published 8th July 2010 by lucy moore

I forgot to include this when I was writing my Canada Diary: in Sunday church we sang that old favourite hymn and just when I was drawing breath for ‘The tall trees in the greenwood’ etc., we launched into the far superior Canadian version:
The rocky mountain splendourThe loon’s wild haunting callThe great lakes and the prairiesThe forest in the fall…
Excellent. I shall launch a campaign for the spiritual appreciation of the loon in the UK. I wonder what their call sounds like? I thought a loon was a ducklike affair, but would hardly call a mallard’s quack ‘haunting’, more ‘honking’. Which is less lyrical.
We should all contextualise our songs. Cowplain could be something like:
The cycle lanes and bus routesThe privet hedges tallThe miles of brickpaved gardensI think God loves them all.
And Sue Avery writes:
Hi Lucy,
Glad to read that you’ve had a great trip to Canada. I was reading the blog about contextualising the songs and that is something we do at Cholsey all the time. As our congregation is still pretty young we’ve adapted or changed the words. Just as an example this month we’re doing Jonah and one of our songs is ‘He’s got the whole world in His hands’ but our verses go:
Vs1 He’s got the whole world (as usual)Vs2 He’s got you, me and Jonah in His plan x3He’s got the whole world in His planVs3 He’s got big and little fishes in his handsHe’s got the whole world in his handsVs4 He’s got all of Messy ChurchHe’s got us safely in his hands.
This might be useful for other messy churches. We’ve also done’The Ten Commandments’ to ‘Frere Jacques”Moses in a basket’ to ‘My Bonnie lies over the ocean”Let’s plant a seed in the soil deep down’ to ‘The Wheels on the Bus”The Plagues and Red Sea Crossing’ to ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”The Lost Sheep’ to ‘If you’re happy and you know it”We are marching around Jericho’ to ‘We are marching Siyahamba’ ( a favourite!)
As you can see we’ve done the Old Testament this year. I think John the Baptist in November will be interesting!

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