HELP WANTED: Searching for a hymn…. Welcome Happy Morning

April 16, 2015

Hi all,

I’m working on a post for L&B which will feature a playlist of about 30 traditional Easter hymns, something I’ve wanted to do for several years, but just hadn’t found the time to work on.  This year I’ve had a bit more time to pull this together.

There’s one Easter hymn I grew up singing, and which I’d love to add to my playlist, but which is proving VERY hard to find.

The hymn in question is Welcome Happy Morning (I’m specifically wanting a version to the tune Fortunatus).

I’ve searched iTunes, Amazon, and YouTube, etc. and can’t find a very good recording or audio of this.

There’s a YouTube video of an Easter Service at St. Barts in NYC from 2011. And also several YouTubes from St. John’s Detroit. Those are enjoyable to watch and I’m glad to find them, but the audio quality is not very good… one can hardly understand the words, and there’s lots of background noise.

I’d really like to find a professional  recording of this hymn for purchase (preferably as an mp3 download, but I’m open to buying a CD if there are other good hymns included!).   I’d love any leads or suggestions our readers might be able to offer.  iTunes and Amazon in the U.S. only have instrumental recordings, no choral version.

Thanks in advance for any help!  Leave info in the comments.  I would have a way to buy recordings in the UK through some of my work colleagues…

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CCM Classics for Easter* – Gaither Vocal Band: Alpha and Omega (1984)

April 16, 2015

*(Ok, yes, this is really Southern Gospel, not CCM… but back in the 1980s and early 1990s, most Christian music was lumped together regardless of subgenre.  And besides, I don’t have enough Southern Gospel music in my Easter playlist to justify a separate category!)

One of the songs I’ve been giving a lot of play in my Easter playlist this year is by the Gaither Vocal Band:  Alpha and Omega.  Searching online, I found an awesome video of the 2003 performance in Sydney Australia by the Gaither Vocal Band of this classic song.  As best I have been able to determine, the song Alpha and Omega was written by Robbie Trice in 1972, and first recorded by the Gaither Vocal Band in 1984, appearing on their album New Point of View.

Although the song focuses on John’s vision of Christ as recorded in Revelation 21, the chorus “It is done…. it is done” makes this a great song for Easter – reminding us of Christ’s FINISHED perfect work.  The resurrection was the exclamation point declaring Christ’s Lordship and His victory over sin, death and hell.  Worship the risen Christ through the few minutes of enjoying this video!

You can buy an excellent recording of the song on the Best of the Gaither Vocal Band album.

Here are the lyrics:

I heard a great voice out of heaven saying
“Behold the tabernacle of God is with men
He shall dwell with them and they shall be His people
And Almighty God will be with them”

“He shall wipe away all tears from their eyes
There shall be no more death
Neither sorrow, nor crying, and no more pain
The former things are all passed away”

He that sat upon the throne said,
“Behold, I make all things new”
He said unto me, “Write these words
For they are faithful and true”

And it is done
It is done
It is done
It is done

He is the Alpha and Omega
The Beginning and the End
The Son of God, the King of Kings
Lord of lords, He’s Everything
Messiah, Jehovah
The Prince of Peace is He
The Son of Man, Seed of Abraham
Second Person in the Trinity 4x

He is the Alpha and Omega
The Son of God, the King of Kings
Messiah, Jehovah
The Great I Am seed of Abraham
He is the Alpha and Omega
The beginning and the end
Son of God, the King of Kings
The Lord of everything
He is Lord


Easter Quotes – The Practice of Resurrection (Eugene Peterson)

April 16, 2015

Practice-of-Resurrection

Graphic and quote from: Embrace the God Life

This is a wonderful quote to help us DELIBERATELY continue celebrating Jesus’ resurrection during the 50 days of Eastertide and beyond:

The practice of resurrection is an intentional, deliberate decision to believe and participate in resurrection life, life out of death, life that trumps death, life that is the last word, Jesus life.

-Eugene Peterson, Practice Resurrection

I’ve been reflecting the past 24 hours or so once again on what it means to “Practice Resurrection” – those famous words from Wendell Berry’s Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front which happen to make an excellent slogan for those of us wanting to celebrate the full 50 days of Eastertide.  I find Eugene Peterson’s words above timely and helpful because they specifically point us to Jesus.  “Practice Resurrection” can in some circles be watered down to “Celebrate Spring” “Be Creative” “Try Something New”  etc etc…  I hope those of us exhorting ourselves and others to “Practice Resurrection” this Eastertide will keep Jesus at the center of our celebration.  It’s not just some abstract idea of resurrection we’re celebrating, but Jesus Christ’s physical resurrection from the dead and the difference He makes for our lives and the world.

I hope to have some more thoughts about what that means and looks like in the coming days.  Stay tuned.  And DO keep practicing resurrection – choosing to deliberately unite yourself to Christ, counting yourself dead to sin and alive to God through Jesus (Rom 6:11), today and always…


Hamas tunnels

April 16, 2015

From The Times of Israel: Hamas has begun using heavy machinery and engineering tools to accelerate the excavation of attack tunnels leading from the Gaza Strip under the Israeli border, sources in the Palestinian enclave told the Times of Israel Wednesday.

O Father,
You chose Israel. They are still beloved for the sake of their forefathers, for Your gifts and Your call are irrevocable. They are called to be the prophetic nation, and You said

“Do not touch my anointed ones;
do my prophets no harm.”

We cry out for no harm to come to Your prophets.
Father, we humbly ask You to flood the tunnels that hold weapons and ammunition. If Israel’s enemies use armed vehicles, boats, or airplanes to prey on her, we humbly ask you to lock their wheels or rudders in mud. If they encroach Israel’s borders, we humbly ask you to rebuff them. If Israel’s enemies seek the death of Your prophets, we humbly ask You to hide Your prophets and rebuke the prophet-slaying spirit.

Lord, have mercy.  Christ, have mercy.  Lord, have mercy.

Amen.


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