4/13/2008

You Go Before Lord, We Will Follow


The Diocese of Delaware had its 223rd annual Convention April 11-12 at St. Philip's, Laurel, Delaware. At the Convention Eucharist on Saturday an anthem commissioned by George Bayley, with words by yours truly, was sung at the Offertory. I hope to post a clearer version of it when it is sung by St. Peter's Choir next week, but here is part of the piece, beginning with the refrain and third verse to the end. In the text below the words in bold are sung in this cut. The refrain is sung by the whole congregation and you can hear the fine melody that George wrote for us.


George Bayley is a wonderful organist and choirmaster and has challenged me to try my hand at writing words for several occasions. It is really a joy to be involved in this. Here are the words:

You go before Lord, we will follow,

you make the path a broad highway.

You are the Word and we are hallowed,
Your form the words for us to say.
As you promised when you sent us,
Jesus you are always near,
In our hearts your love is present,
in the Spirit you are here.

(Refrain)
We will follow, we will go,
You have hallowed, we will sow,
bread and flowers, wine and tears,
Grace poured out that ends all fears.

In Sudan and far New Guinea,
In La Paz and Mandalay,

You have sent us to the many,
You have made us yours today.

Where you travel we will follow,
Where the path leads we will go,
Where your Word is, all is hallowed,
Lord you teach and we will pray.


(Refrain) We will follow, we will go,
You have hallowed, we will sow,
bread and flowers, wine and tears,
Grace poured out that ends all fears.


For your glory we will follow,
For your honor we will go,
In your presence all is hallowed,
In your Words are deeds to sow.
Help us in your way to follow,
Help us in your path to go,
Help us know that all is hallowed,
Help us make the witness flow.

(Refrain) We will follow, we will go,
You have hallowed, we will sow,
bread and flowers, wine and tears,
Grace poured out that ends all fears.

As you promised when you sent us,
Jesus you are always near,
In our hearts your love is present,
In the Spirit you are here.

4 comments:

  1. Soon you will be rich and famous and I'll be able to say, "Ah, yes, Mark Harris. I knew him when."

    ReplyDelete
  2. In the past few months I've been exposed to more contemporary poetry that I've seen in years. Yours is the first with meter and rhyme that doesn't sound like bad Longfellow. It's a dying form and what a delight to see it flame up in new words with new energy.
    CP

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congrats on a wonderful piece of writing.



    FWIW
    jimB

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lovely...thank you.

    Leonardo Ricardo

    ReplyDelete

OK... Comments, gripes, etc welcomed, but with comment moderation but with some cautions and one rule:
Cautions: Calling people fools, idiots, etc, will be reason to bounce your comment. Keeping in mind that in the struggles it is difficult enough to try to respect opponents, we should at least try.
Rule: PLEASE DO NOT SIGN OFF AS ANONYMOUS: BEGIN OR END THE MESSAGE WITH A NAME - ANY NAME. ANONYMOUS commentary will be cut.