Monday, 25 March 2013

"Peter's Dream": a hymn

While Peter dreamed, he saw a blanket filled with food:
from most his conscience caused him to abstain.
God’s voice called, “Eat!”; and after Peter’s “No!” replied:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
 And still Christ calls to us, to all God’s people,
to view God’s world with love, and not disdain;
to celebrate the wonders of God’s universe:
"What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”

Throughout the centuries, the Church has often failed
to put these words to practice, to great pain;
in many ways forgetting God’s clear mandate:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
And still Christ calls to us, to all God’s people,
to view God’s world with love, and not disdain;
to celebrate the wonders of God’s universe:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
 
So now the Church is often seeking to renew
its life together, struggling to obtain
the broader view of life to which Christ calls us:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
And still Christ calls to us, to all God’s people,
to view God’s world with love, and not disdain;
to celebrate the wonders of God’s universe:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”

And in the future, Christ will still be calling
all Christian folk to share that glad refrain,
sharing God’s love for all life in this universe:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
And still Christ calls to us, to all God’s people,
to view God’s world with love, and not disdain;
to celebrate the wonders of God’s universe:
“What God has cleansed, you must not call profane!”
Copyright Ó Robert J. Faser, 1999
tune:    Londonderry Air
 
Some years ago, I had the idea of a series of hymns based on the passages from the Book of Acts read during the season from Easter to Pentecost.  So far, I have written two of these hymns, both to the Irish folk tune Londonderry Air. 

Songs for Singing (2009) has a hymn arrangement for Londonderry Air written by John McRae for this hymn.

Also, hymn arrangements for Londonderry Air can be found in British Methodist hymnbooks for the hymn “I cannot tell why he, whom angels worship …” (no. 238 in Hymns and Psalms), and in John Bell and Graham Maule’s When Grief is Raw, for the hymn “Go, silent friend . . .”.

This hymn is based on the story of Peter’s dream (Acts 10: 9 –16, repeated later in Acts).  Peter's dream is part of the lessons on the fifth Sunday of Easter in Year C of the Ecumenical Lectionary.
 

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