Music for Sunday 30th December 2018, 1st Sunday of Christmas, Year C

The readings for this Sunday are:
1 Samuel 2:18-20, 26
Psalm 148
Colossians 3:12-17
Luke 2:41-52

1 Samuel 2:18-20, 26 — Samuel was given to the Temple by his parents when he was still a child, and they used to go and visit him each year.

Psalm 148 — a song instructing all to praise God’s glory, including heavens, heights, angels, sun, moon, stars, heavens (again), waters above the heavens, sea monsters and all deeps, et cetera.

Colossians 3:12-17 — advice to the Colossians and to us about behaving in a loving and kind manner, and allowing the peace of Christ to rule in us; being thankful; allowing the word of Christ to dwell in us; singing praises to God; and doing everything in the name of the Lord Jesus.

Luke 2:41-52 — Jesus and his family go to the Temple for Passover, Mary and Joseph travel back but they can’t find Jesus, after three days he’s still in the Temple.

In terms of musical resources, you might have a visiting choir on this Sunday, or you might have no choir at all, or you might just be a bit thin on the ground.

Alice Tegnér, Psalm 148
Swedish text, SATB with soloist, organ optional, moderately easy, 2min 20s.
Available from CPDL:

Hilary Tann, Contemplations (8, 9)
Latin and English text from Psalm 148 and a poem by Anne Bradstreet.
SSA a capella, moderately challenging, 5min 10s
Available from Brichtmark Music, scroll right to the bottom:

Patricia Van Ness, Psalm 148
Part of Birds of the Psalms
English text adapted from the Book of Common Prayer by the composer
SSATBB a capella, challenging, 2min
Available from the composer’s website:

Rosephanye Powell, Have you seen the baby Jesus?
English text, SSAA or SATB with soloist, moderately easy, 2min 40s.
Available from JW Pepper: (SSAA) (SATB)

Kathryn Rose, BRAXTED, Wherever Love Is.
English text by Marnanel Thurman, SATB hymn tune, easy, 3vv.
Available from CPDL:–_Braxted_(Kathryn_Rose)

Music for Sunday, 6th May: Easter 6, Year B

The readings for this week are:

Isaiah 55:1-11
Acts 10:44-48
Psalm 98
1 John 5:1-6
John 15:9-17

It’s still Easter, so you still need the reading from Acts as the first or second reading.

Isaiah 55:1-11 is an invitation to everyone thirsty to drink, to everyone hungry to eat: of that source of all being which is God.

In the reading from Acts, some Gentiles receive the Holy Spirit, much to the surprise of the existing (Jewish) believers. Peter takes this as a reason that the Gentiles should be baptized, too.

Psalm 98 is an excited instruction to sing and praise the victorious God who will come to judge the earth.

1 John is still emphasizing that God is love — and “The love of God is this, that we obey his commandments”. He also makes a point that faith in God is what conquers the world. Then he identifies Jesus Christ as having come by water and blood, not just water, and asserts that the Spirit is the truth.

The Gospel reading has Jesus continue his speech to the disciples, telling them to keep his commandment to love one another, and calling them friends rather than servants, and referring back to the vine imagery with “I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last”.

There is a Cantate Domino by Williametta Spencer, but it appears to be out of print; the best bet if you haven’t got it in a music library somewhere is probably to contact her via her website.

There’s also the SSA piece CONTEMPLATIONS 21, 22 by Hilary Tann, using parts of Psalm 98 and a poem by Anne Bradstreet, an American Puritan poet. Available to order from Brichtmark Music (scroll or search the page to find it). Here’s an excerpt: