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God, In Our Church’s Teaching (free hymn after violence in Atlanta)

God, In Our Church’s Teaching
AURELIA D (“The Church’s One Foundation”)

God, in our church’s teaching, may we be bold and clear;
may it become our practice to counter hate and fear.
We’ve said that Jesus’ message is one that’s filled with love,
and yet our sweeping statements are clearly not enough.

Isaiah boldly told us you hate our worship ways
when we ignore injustice and simply offer praise.
And Jesus gave a warning: When we— in sin and pride—
refuse to welcome others, we turn our Lord aside.

May these be crucial lessons we teach the old and young:
that racist ways are evil, that sexist ways are wrong.
In Sunday schools and pulpits, may this be what we speak:
God made each person precious, beloved and unique.

O God, we grieve the violence, the shootings, and the hate;
we grieve our own indifference— our speaking out too late.
God, in our church’s witness, may we say loud and clear:
We welcome every neighbor. We work for justice here.

Biblical references: Luke 10:25-37; John 13:34-35; Isaiah 58; Matthew 25:31-46; Genesis 1:26-27;
1 John 3:1; 4:7-21; Amos 5:24 and Micah 6:8
Tune: Samuel Sebastian Wesley, 1864
Text: Copyright © 2021 by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette. All rights reserved.
Email: New Hymns:

This hymn was completed on Saturday, March 20, as a response to the shootings of Asian women and others in Atlanta and the increasing attacks on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

Permission is given for free use of this hymn by local churches and ecumenical groups, including for streaming online in worship services.

Carolyn Winfrey Gillette has written over 400 hymns to well-known tunes, including several to counter racism, sexism and gun violence that have been sung by thousands of churches with feature stories about them in The Christian Century, The New Yorker, Sojourners, PBS-TV and NPR. Presbyterian Outlook has commissioned Carolyn to write many hymns. All of her hymn texts can be found on her website:

Presbyterian pastor Casey Carbone has created a music video of this hymn (set to a different tune).    It is available on YouTube.
Cynthia Braswell posted a music video on YouTube using the original hymn tune.