This Sunday’s Music: XXVIII Sunday of Ordinary Time
Last week’s readings focused intensely on the power of faith, and today’s continue well along that path. Our Scriptural lessons are laced with the idea of faith, but thrust to the front of our attention is the need to give thanks unto the LORD. “The LORD hath made known His salvation ... [to] all the ends of the earth” (Psalms 98:2a, 3b), and for this reason, all creation must rise up in praise and thanksgiving for the “marvellous things” that “He hath done” (Psalms 98:1b).
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YOU BLESSED ME, LORD
We love this hymn by Mr. Bradley, don’t we? “Oh, You blessed me, LORD, / When I woke up early this morning, / Clothed in my right mind”, we sing in the refrain of this bright song. We see in today’s readings the blessings of the LORD upon those who come to Him, whether it be directly like the ten lepers in the Gospel or through His Word like Naaman in the First Reading and the “elect” of the Second Reading, for whose sakes Paul “endure[s] all things … that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory” (2 Timothy 2:10). So, let us give thanks to God for His blessings!
Text & Music: Patrick Bradley.
If you have lived since the 80s — which most likely is anyone reading this right now —, you know this melody by the two powerhouses of modern Catholic liturgical music through the 80s and 90s: David Haas (writer of You Are Mine, We Are Called and Blest Are They) and Marty Haugen (writer of We Remember, We Are Many Parts, Canticle of the Sun, Shepherd Me, O God and the ubiquitous Mass of Creation). In this vibrant setting of Psalm 98, we will proclaim that “all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God” (Psalms 98:3b). You can feel the majestic power of our Sovereign in the steady, heavy beat of the SFDS rendition.
Text & Music: David Haas, Marty Haugen © 1983, GIA Publications. All rights reserved.
I LOVE TO PRAISE HIM
In today’s Second Reading, we hear St. Paul reminding Timothy of “a faithful saying”, which concludes with: “If we believe not, yet He abideth faithful: He cannot deny Himself” (2 Timothy 2:13). We love this old-school gospel tune of the Southern United States, and with it, we love to praise His Holy Name. The LORD is ever faithful, for “He’ll never, never, never let me down”. He is a rock, a sword, a shield, a wheel in the middle of a wheel, a gem, etc. So, praise Him like the redeemed of today’s readings, SFDS! Lift those holy voices!
Text & Music: Traditional.
In today’s First Reading, upon being cured of his leprosy as a result of following the instructions of the prophet Elisha, Naaman exclaims, “Behold, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel … [T]hy servant will henceforth offer neither burnt offering nor sacrifice unto other gods, but unto the LORD” (2 Kings 5:15, 17). It is the God of Israel, the Father who would give His only Son for the remission of sins, who is holy, who is LORD, who is worthy to be honoured and adored for His kindness, His mercy and His love. Today, we at SFDS will sing for the first time a modern classic from the contemporary Catholic repertoire: a gentle, simple but hauntingly beautiful song by acclaimed songwriter Sarah Hart. Like Naaman, let us lift up our prayer to Him alone.
Text & Music: Sarah Hart, Dwight Liles. Text & Music © 1999, 2012, Universal Music Group-BMG Songs, Inc. (ASCAP) and Sarah Hart. All rights reserved.
O GIVE THANKS (PSALM 136)
In today’s Gospel verse — that Scriptural passage sandwiched between our proclaiming that joyful Alleluia —, we hear: “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Here’s a word: thanksgiving. If you live in the USA or Canada, you immediately think of the holiday that promotes gluttony amidst family reunions, parades and Black Friday sales. But what is the meaning of this holiday, which will be here in just over a month? That we must always be in a state of giving thanks! O give thanks! Give thanks like the lepers of today’s Scripture passages! Give thanks like St. Paul imprisoned yet faithful! Give thanks like the redeemed children of God you are, sitting in the pews every Sunday and taking the Good News to the world with your daily living! Truly we must give thanks not on a single day, not when we witness the “marvellous things” of the LORD, but at all times… in everything we do and say and for everything we have and have not. O give thanks, for His mercy endureth forever!
Text & Music: A. Jeffrey LaValley © 2016, A. Jeffrey LaValley, Candied Jam Music and BMI. International copyright secured. All rights reserved.
IF YOU JUST HAVE FAITH
What is the last line of today’s Gospel? “And He said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole” (Luke 17:19). Faith, as we stated last week — you can read more by clicking the link below —, is so powerful that it can cure the incurable, such as we witness in two of today’s readings: from 2 Kings and from Luke 17. Faith is such a mighty weapon in this world that it can even make mountains to tumble down before us and the Devil to run in fear. We had so much fun with this new hymn last week, and it is so applicable to today’s readings that we are going to sing it once more. But you have to promise us something… you’re gonna DANCE like you did last week!
Text & Music: Traditional Caribbean; English Translation: Dylan Wyka. Translation © 2019, Dylan Wyka. All rights reserved.