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Hymn Meditation

Hymn Meditation | Christ the King

November 24, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: King of Glory, King of Peace | GENERAL SEMINARY

17th century poet George Herbert was one of the most prolific and enduring sacred poets of his time. His text for this poem praises a King not of power or dominion, but one of peace and love. He writes about a deep relationship with a King that is nurturing, sustaining and sacrificing. The poem (from The Temple of 1633) contains seven stanzas, but one was omitted for the sake of singing. Echoing the title and spirit of the poem, the stanza that is missing is: Thou grew’st soft and moist with tears, Thou relendest: And when Justice call’d for fears, Thou disentedst. The broad, sweeping music that is in The Hymnal 1982 was written by David Charles Walker, a former priest in the Diocese of Los Angeles. He served in various ministries in Southern California, including All Souls’ Parish in Point Loma (San Diego), All Saints’ Parish (Beverly Hills) and as Chaplain at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 24

November 17, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Not Here for High and Holy Things | GORONATION (alt. tune)

If you were on the patio or watched the live stream this past Sunday, you’ll notice the text of this hymn is one we sang on Sunday. The tune, however, is different than what corresponds with the number in our hymnal. Music has the uncanny ability of setting text in a different context. Using this text with the tune Coronation allows the last verse of the text by Anglican Priest, Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy to not only live fresh, but carries the triumphant tone of giving thanks to God for our blessings as we share them with others. Often garnering him wild accusations, Studdert Kennedy rejected joining a political party and distrusted most politicians, simply believing that all people were of worth in God’s sight.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 23

November 10, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Once He Came in Blessing | GOTTES SOHN IST GEKOMMEN

This hymn, not frequently sung by many Anglicans, is actually a hymn for the season of Advent. It’s still appropriate for the time late in the season of Pentecost, and especially in our world. We’re edging closer to a season of preparation for the birth of Christ, but were reminded in this week’s Gospel to “Keep awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour” (John 25:13) of his coming. This hymn reminds us to trust in the coming savior to free us from torment and heal us. Michael Weisse, a Bohemian Brethren Pastor, wrote the tune for this hymn. He was a contemporary of Martin Luther and was from a region in Silesia (modern day Poland). As always, we invite you to either sing along at home or just follow along with the text and music as you continue your week in prayer.

Hymn Meditation | All Saints

November 3, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: I Sing a Song of the Saints of God | GRAND ISLE

This past Sunday, we celebrated the Feast of All Saints, giving thanks for those holy people, both saints and ordinary folk, that have gone on to their great reward. We give thanks for the faithful cloud of witnesses that continue to lift and support us. Lesbia Scott’s poetry illuminates the cloud of witnesses in the variety of people that are counted among the saints. Though this hymn appeared in the 1940 Hymnal, it almost didn’t make it into The Hymnal 1982. The editors of the new hymnal didn’t see the merit of this hymn in the life of the church at the time. Fortunately for the hymn’s continued longevity, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church saw merit to this hymn and decided to include it in the new hymnal despite the editor’s objection. Many parishes (St. James' included) consider this hymn and Sine Nomine to be two of the hymns that must be included on All Saints' Day.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 21

October 27, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: I Bind Unto Myself Today | ST. PATRICK’S BREASTPLATE/DEIRDRE

The poetry of this hymn has its original form in a 9th century Celtic prayer. In the later part of the 19th century, Cecil Frances Alexander adapted it into the form we see today at the request of the Dean of the Chapel Royal at Dublin Castle in 1889. Comprising two Irish Melodies, this hymn was adapted and harmonized by two of the greatest composers of English Music: Charles Villiers Stanford and Ralph Vaughan Williams. Much has been written about the poetry used in this hymn. A favorite at St. James, the text invites us to bind ourselves to Christ through times of deep confusion and chaos. Search on this channel for the Rev. Canon Anne Tumilty’s sermon from this past Sunday to delve deeper into the texts that accompanied this great hymn.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 20

October 20, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: For the Fruits of all Creation | EAST ACKLAM

In the midst of all that is going on in the world, out stewardship theme this year encourages us to be Faithful Together. From the abundance of our living, we are invited to share what we have, being faithful together as a parish, in thanksgiving to the one who has provided so much to us. Fred Pratt Green’s text of this hymn is often thought of as a fall/harvest hymn. While the literal ideas of plowing, sowing and reaping may seem foreign to us in Los Angeles, they are a metaphor for what it means to be Faithful Together. If this hymn tune is new to you and you don’t have a hymnal at home, please listen and follow along with the text as you continue your week in prayer.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 19

October 13, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: All Creatures of our God and King | LASST UNS ERFREUEN

On Sunday, October 11, we celebrated the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi with a blessing of the animals. 2020 has been atypical for most people and this year’s blessing of the animals was held virtually. We extolled and remembered St. Francis and his love of all animals and nature. This hymn gives thanks for all of creation and praises God for the earth in its abundance of all living things.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 18

October 6, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: God is Love | ABBOT’S LEIGH.

The hymn meditation for this week works off of ideas from The Rev. Dr. Michell Wright-Baker’s sermon from last Sunday. Through every bit of daily earthly strife, draw strength from the eternal love and unfailing grasp of God. Cyril V. Taylor wrote this tune in May of 1941 so that the BBC could use the text “Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken” to a tune other than AUSTRIA (The Austrian National Anthem which was further used by the Nazis). The tune takes its name from a small village near Bristol, England and was first printed in a hymnal in the 1950 edition of “Hymns Ancient and Modern Revised.” It has since made its way into most denominational hymnals.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 17

September 29, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Just a Closer Walk With Thee | CLOSER WALK.

The hymn meditation for this week draws from Rev. Gethin’s sermon from last Sunday. In the midst of all of life’s struggles, Rev. Gethin encouraged us to turn to and deepen our relationship with God. So is the case with this hymn, which is not found in our hymnal, but is sung widely throughout the church. To many, this hymn may be known as the Dixieland funeral procession hymn. The text of this spiritual is a prayer that draws us closer to God through all of life’s journey.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 16

September 22, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Here, O My Lord | NYACK.

The hymn meditation for this week comes both from the Rev. Dr. Michelle Wright-Baker’s sermon from this past Sunday as well as the Collect of the day found below. “Grant us, Lord, not to be anxious about earthly things, but to love things heavenly; and even now, while we are placed among things that are passing away, to hold fast to those that shall endure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.” – The Book of Common Prayer p. 234

Hymn Meditation | Holy Cross Sunday

September 15, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light | HOUSTON.

Susanne Wright-Nava’s Sermon for Holy Cross called on each one of us to live in the light of the cross rather than the shadow of darkness that surrounds us. Our parish uses this hymn often throughout the Church year, notably at Baptisms and during the Easter Vigil. Both of these occasions invite us to live in the light of Christ. The text and tune for this hymn were written by Kathleen Thomerson (b. 1934). She is a Lutheran organist, choirmaster, and composer based in Austin, TX. “I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light” is perhaps her best known hymn and it appears in many denominational hymnals.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 14

September 8, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Love Divine, All Loves Excelling | BLAENWERN .

Reflecting last week’s sermon theme of living together as a community in love, this hymn calls on God to create something new within us, so that we may live together in wonder, love, and praise. This text by Charles Wesley is most commonly associated with the tune named "Hyfrydol" in the United States. Throughout the United Kingdom, however, it is most often associated with the Welsh tune "Blaenwern." The New English Hymnal (found throughout the Church of England) doesn’t use "Hyfrydol "for this text, preferring either "Blaenwern" or "Love Divine" by John Stainer. "Blaenwern" was written by William Penfro Rowlands during the Welsh revival of 1904-1905. The tune's name refers to a farm in Pembroke shire, where Rowlands convalesced in his youth. He composed hymn tunes and anthems and was conductor of the famous Morriston United Choral Society of southern Wales; later he served as precentor of the Tabernacle Congregational Church in Morriston.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 13

September 1, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: The Church’s One Foundation | AURELIA.

This hymn, reflecting last week’s sermon theme of being community in Christ challenged to follow Jesus, is one of the most widely sung hymns in Christendom. The text is written by Samuel John Stone, an English poet, hymn writer and priest in the Church of England.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 12

August 25, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday’s sermon. Hymn: Take My Life, and Let It Be | HOLLINGSIDE.

This hymn, a parish favorite, reflects poet Frances Ridley Havergal’s experience of prayer and blessing during a house party in which she offers herself up to God’s service with the gifts she has been given. Havergal was a musician, linguist, author of devotional literature, and editor of psalm collections and of her father’s (an Anglican rector) unfinished work.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 11

August 18, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday's sermon. Hymn: We Walk by Faith | ST. BOTOLPH.

This hymn continues on last week's theme of "walking in faith." We invite you to either sing along at home or just follow the text (by Henry Alford) and music as you continue your week in prayer.

Hymn Meditation | Pentecost 10

August 11, 2020

Organist Jason Klein-Mendoza offers a weekly hymn reflection on last Sunday's sermon. Hymn: O Master, Let Me Walk with Thee | MARYTON.

This hymn reflects on the theme of "walking with Jesus." Either sing along at home or just follow the text (by Washington Gladden) and music as you continue your week in prayer.

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