Monday, December 10, 2018

A new hymn

Yesterday I attended services at the congregation I frequent (I also do several services a year for them), and we had a couple discuss the "Life of a Peacemaker." It was an interesting message, although frankly not as deep or informational as I could have wished. Still, I can't fault it for what I expected it to be. 

But what I want to talk about is a song. The service's second hymn was John Lennon's "Imagine." The lyrics were printed out and passed around with our hymnals. I've discussed in the past my firm belief that, as churches and services grow and change, one of the likeliest changes will be the co-opting of seminal, probably secular songs into our hymnals to take the place of songs that either don't connect with our theology (we already see this with the dropping from many denominations of such aggressive, warlike songs as "Onward, Christian Soldiers") or that have greater resonance with our congregations (in my own UU faith, we see this in the inclusion of the song popularized by Cat Stevens, "Morning Has Broken"). I suspect "Imagine" could be the bridge between every faith by its inclusion as a hymn.

If this is the case, it'll be helped along by its simple tune and rhyme scheme, its ubiquity in mass culture, and the simple fact that, as I looked around, I noticed that nearly everyone my age was singing from beginning to end without looking at the lyrics. We have already taken it in as our own.

No comments:

Post a Comment