*God’s Words. Our Voice: Singing the Songs of Faith – May 13, 2018

May 12, 2018

“I am not ashamed to confess publicly that next to theology there is no art which is the equal of music…”    Martin Luther, in a letter (1530) to Catholic composer, Ludwig Senfl

Hymns are often the first way we learn to give voice to our faith as children and even those who are not great singers have favorite hymns that they know by heart.  You are invited to reflect on this stanza in the week ahead.  Use it for prayer, meditation, or in daily devotion.  Our prayer and hope is that these hymn stanzas will lift and deepen your faith and encourage your living of that faith in daily works of love and acts of mercy.

Thine the Amen ELW 826, stanza 2


Thine the life eternally thine the promise let there be

thine the vision thine the tree all the earth on bended knee

gone the nailing gone the railing gone the pleading gone the cry

gone the sighing gone the dying what was loss lifted high


Herbert Brokering wrote this hymn at Holden Village, the place where our Lenten worship liturgy originated, during a retreat in the summer of 1981.  It was the tenth hymn he wrote in ten days.  Each morning a colleague of Brokering’s led a bible study.  It was then Brokering’s responsibility to compose a hymn that afternoon based on the day’s bible study.

Brokering is quoted as saying, “We sang each study the following morning.  This hymn is on the great Eucharistic theology in Revelation.  It was to be a then to the now.”  The “Now” that Brokering mentions refers to Jaroslav Vajda’s Now the SilenceNow the Silence has no punctuation at all, and Thine the Amen only has punctuation at the end of each stanza.  This technique was used to allow each hymn to be a list of simple things one should expect to worship.  Vajda even goes as far in his hymn to avoid any rhyming or clichés.


Acknowledgements:  Weekly hymn selections have been adapted from Singing the Songs of Faith: 52 Great Hymn Stanzas created in 2011 by Isobel Davies, Thatcher Lyman, Paul E. Shoop, and Jeremy Shoop.  The selection reflects their views and priorities and is a teaching tool in their settings.  The original resource is available in electronic form at  http://immanuelwebster.org/lutheran/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/52-Great-Hymns_web.pdf