Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Trinity 18: a note on this
evening’s service and hymns

Christ in Majesty at the Last Judgment … a fresco in the Orthodox Monastery of Saint John the Baptist in Tolleshunt Knights, Essex (Photograph: Patrick Comerford)

Patrick Comerford

This evening [7 October 2015], I am presiding at the Community Eucharist in the Chapel of the Church of Ireland Theological Institute, and my colleague, Dr Katie Heffelfinger, is preaching.

These photographs and these notes appear on the service sheets prepared for this evening:

A note on this evening’s service and hymns:

This evening’s readings, collect and post-communion prayer are those for the Eighteenth Sunday after Trinity. Three of our hymns this evening are selected from the new supplemental hymnal, Thanks & Praise, published last month.

Processional Hymn: ‘We love the place, O God’ (Irish Church Hymnal, 343) is based on this evening’s psalm, Psalm 26. It was written by William Bullock (1798-1874), a former naval officer who became an SPG missionary in Newfoundland and Dean of Halifax, and the Revd Sir Henry William Baker (1821-1877), the driving force behind the first Anglican hymnal, Hymns Ancient and Modern (1861). The tune Quam Dilecta is by Henry Lascelles Jenner (1820-1898), Bishop of Dunedin.

Gloria: ‘Glory in the highest to the God of heaven!’ (Church Hymnal, 693) was written by the Revd Christopher Idle in 1976 for this earlier tune, Cuddesdon, written in 1919 by Canon William H Ferguson, who had been an ordinand at Cuddesdon Theological College, near Oxford.

Gradual: ‘Your words to me are life and health’ (Thanks & Praise, 174) is by George Currie Martin (1865-1937), a Scottish-born Congregationalist patristic scholar. The tune ‘Capel’ is an English traditional melody harmonised by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) and named after the Surrey village where his uncle lived.

Offertory: ‘God everlasting, wonderful and holy’ (Thanks & Praise, 43) is by Harold Riley (1903-2003). The tune Coelites plaudant is a melody from the Rouen Antiphoner (1728) and was harmonised in this majestic setting by Vaughan Williams, originally for ‘Christ, the Fair Glory of the Holy Angels’ by Athelstan Riley in the English Hymnal, which Vaughan Williams co-edited with Percy Dearmer.

Communion Hymn: As we receive Holy Communion, we sing ‘Jesus, remember me’ (Church Hymnal, 617), by Jacques Berthier (1923-1994) and the Taizé Community.

Post Communion Hymn: ‘Pray for the Church, afflicted and oppressed’ (Thanks & Praise, 121) is by the Revd Fred Pratt Green (1903-2000), one of the best-known modern Methodist hymn-writers. The tune ‘Flexford’ is by Hugh Benham, the biographer of John Taverner.

Patrick Comerford, 7 October 2015


The East Window in the Round Church, Cambridge, depicts the Risen Christ in Majesty (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2015)