When July Fourth falls on a Sunday, we have a wonderful opportunity to worship God in thanksgiving for our nation. Sunday’s music and hymns include some unique musical gems. At the 10:30 liturgy, after the prelude, Al Fedak’s sympathetic setting of the Navy Hymn tune, the great national hymn “God of Our Fathers” begins the liturgy. A new work by Lionel Deimel is sung by the choir at communion. This piece, entitled “Out of Many, One,” was his submission to a project to produce new national anthems, and his tune and text are nicely crafted. After communion, we all sing the great national hymn “O Beautiful for Spacious Skies.” The postlude is a wonderfully idiosyncratic piece by Charles Ives entitled “He is There,” a song he wrote in 1917 paying tribute to the young American soldiers of World War I. In this music, he quotes several great nineteenth-century American songs, including “Tenting Tonight,” “Battle Cry of Freedom,” “Marching through Georgia,” “The Star-spangled Banner,” “Dixie,” and probably several more! Happy Fourth of July!You can find out more about my anthem on my Web site here.
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