About ten days ago, a crazy thought occurred to me, so I wrote Carol Langner about closing the celebration program with everyone singing (and me playing) a hymn. I requested When in our music God is glorified, sung to the tune ENGELBERG, and composed by Charles Villiers Stanford. It has a great text and a strong tune, so appropriate for church musicians and this Easter season.
It just so happens that ten years ago Carol designed a plaque in honor of my twenty-fifth anniversary at LCH which you can see below. She titled it “When in our music God is glorified.” (Click the picture to enlarge the text.)
I also wondered whether Pastor Fritz would be willing to write some custom verses, as is his extraordinary talent, and I was most excited when Carol wrote back, “Yes, yes, yes!” to the idea.
So here is the text to this great hymn tune, with verses 3-7 written by the Rev. Fritz Fritschel. Verses 1, 2 and 8 were written by F. Pratt Green.
1. When in our music God is glorified,
and adoration leaves no room for pride,
it is as though the whole creation cried: Alleluia!
2. How oft, in making music, we have found
a new dimension in the world of sound;
as worship moved us to a more profound Alleluia!
3. The organ trumpets sound of joy replete
while children watch in awe at Kathy’s feet
before the hymn concludes, a four-fold beat, Alleluia!
4. Her students know of Bach and fugal art,
how hands and feet each play a crucial part,
when joined as one, in play, they touch one’s heart, Alleluia!
5. Her fingers flit ‘cross keys that end in trills:
toccata’s runs produce their own bright thrills.
By practice she can play as e’er she wills. Alleluia!
6. When asked to play in rites with smells and bells,
she keeps the rhythm’s pace with strength, it tells,
as when the chorus ends with its own yells, Alleluia!
7. Our gratitude for years of sparkling play,
of music’s beauty in such wide array,
for Kathy’s artistry we gladly say, Alleluia!
8. Let ev’ry instrument be timed for praise:
let all rejoice who have a voice to raise;
and may God give us faith to sing always, Alleluia!
I was so excited to jump onto the organ that I made my one mistake of the year (oops!) during the introduction! I also was in a state of panic because I didn’t know what verse we were on!