« PreviousContinue »
It was voted by both Houses of the General Convention, held in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and sixteen:
That the New Hymnal, as reported by the Joint Commission on the Revision of the Hymnal, be authorized and approved for use in this Church.
That the Commission be continued with authority to perfect the details of its work and to complete, for the benefit of the Church Pension Fund, musical editions of the New Hymnal.
That the publication of the Hymnal be committed to the Trustees of the Church Pension Fund for the benefit of that Fund.
GEORGE FRANCIS NELSON,
Secretary of the House of Bishops. HENRY ANSTICE,
Secretary of the House of Deputies.
It is hereby certified that this edition of the Hymnal having been compared with, and corrected by, the standard book as the General Convention has directed, is permitted to be published accordingly.
On behalf of the Commission empowered to superintend the publication of the Hymnal.
CORTLANDT WHITEHEAD, Chairman.
RUBRIC FROM THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER
HYMNS AND ANTHEMS
HYMNS set forth and allowed by the authority of this Church, and Anthems in the words of Holy Scripture or of the Book of Common Prayer, may be sung before and after any Office in this Book, and also before and after Sermons.
OF THE MUSIC OF THE CHURCH
It shall be the duty of every Minister to appoint for use in his Congregation hymns or anthems from those authorized by the Rubric, and, with such assistance as he may see fit to employ from persons skilled in music, to give order concerning the tunes to be sung in his Church. It shall be his especial duty to suppress all light and unseemly music, and all irreverence in the performance.
The General Convention of the year 1913 entrusted to a Commission the revision of the Hymnal. The General Convention of 1916, accepting a book then submitted, referred it back to the Commission with instructions to perfect it and give it to the Church. In its effort to obey this command, the Commission now presents this book.
Some hymns which were in the former collection have been omitted because it was discovered by careful inquiry that they were seldom if ever used.. One of the principles of the revision was to make the new book as compact as excellence and variety would permit. Some old hymns which are perhaps below the general standard are retained because they have the affection of a considerable number of people.
The hymns added find a place either because they are great religious verse, or because they express the experience and aspiration of our time. These are hymns intended to voice our yearning for larger social service, for deeper patriotism, for a more eager chligation to the winning and maintaining of a free world, for a higher enthusiasm towards the unity and extension of Christianity. This Hymnal of 1918 cannot escape the marks of the Great War,-its tragedy, its sympathy, its loving sacrifice, its gratitude because God has given us the victory for the right and the true.
The hymns have been arranged as nearly as possible in the Prayer Book order, with the hope that people will recognize that they have a companion for the Book of Common Prayer in a Book of Common Praise.
The Commission has tried to retain and to add such hymns as express reality in the religious life. At the same time there has been generous thought for a wide diversity of temperament and training. From stern simplicity to exuberant emotion, the ays in which men would praise God are manifold. Accordingly there are hymns of objective adoration, august and distant, side by side with hymns which unburden the singer's heart and tell what God has done for him alone.
The members of the Commission charged with the task of selecting the music of the hymns have tried first of all to select music which congregations as well as choristers can sing. The number of sentimental and weak melodies has been reduced. It is hoped that the many fine new tunes will so far win their way that such inferior music as is retained will lose its attraction. Great tunes that have voiced