My Three Favorite Hymns

I was in Nairobi town on Friday morning for a special meeting and I decided to pass by the Holy Family Basilica. It had been some long while since I had last been in town and more specifically at that church.

I walked into the church and I just felt this deep sense of nostalgia and calmness. I do not even know how to explain it.

The Holy Family Basilica Church
Image Credit: Holy Family Basilica

In fact, I will just come out and say it – I do miss the Catholic Church a lot in some aspects.

Definitely not in many of the doctrinal aspects!

Perhaps it is the way the churches are built to radiate reverence and worship… I do not know. But for somebody who grew up all her life in such quiet and meditative-like environments of worship and with such methodical structures, I still struggle adjusting to some of the protestant church operations and styles of worship. And this is not at all about criticizing one to uplift the other – and/or vice versa – rather, just an expression of yearning for similar-like environment some times.

Seems I can’t— really— have my cake and eat it too.

Anywho, our parents took us to church at — St. Paul’s Catholic Chapel, University of Nairobi Chaplaincy — ever since we were little children and that choir! My goodness! Nothing short of glorious! You wouldn’t sleep through any of their singing.

Though I cannot attend mass now (by my own prerogative), I would, and do, certainly walk into any catholic church to pray, spend time in meditation and listen to hymns of faith in Jesus by the church choirs.

Yet, most times I have found that it is impossible to attend choir practices as there are always songs sang in worship and veneration to Mary.

However, there are three specific hymns I particularly desire to listen to and sing along with any choir. There is this one song in particular I loved which the choir used to sing at St. Paul’s; I heard it on You-Tube just recently after a long 10+ years and just longed with a deep longing to be at a church singing hymns again.

✓ All Hail The Power of Jesus’ Name

By Edward Perronet (1726 – 1792)

All hail the pow’r of Jesus’ Name!
Let angels prostrate fall;
Bring forth the royal diadem,
And crown Him Lord of all!

Ye chosen seed of Israel’s race,
Ye ransomed from the fall,
Hail Him Who saves you by His grace,
And crown Him Lord of all!

Let every kindred, every tribe,
On this terrestrial ball,
To Him all majesty ascribe,
And crown Him Lord of all!

Sinners, whose love can ne’er forget
The wormwood and the gall
Go spread your trophies at His feet
And crown Him Lord of all

Oh, that with yonder sacred throng
We at His feet may fall!
We’ll join the everlasting song,
And crown Him Lord of all!

These remaining two hymns below – what I wouldn’t give to just sit at the pews listening to a choir sing them every single end of the week!

✓ Guide Me, O Thou Great Redeemer

By William Williams Pantycelyn 1745 /Cwm Rhondda John Hughes in 1907.

Guide me, O Thou great redeemer,
Pilgrim through this barren land;
I am weak, but Thou art mighty,
Hold me with Thy powerful hand;
Bread of heaven, bread of heaven
Feed me now and evermore;
Feed me now and evermore.

Open now the crystal fountain
Whence the healing stream doth flow;
Let the fire and cloudy pillar
Lead me all my journey through:
Strong deliverer, strong deliverer;
Be Thou still my strength and shield;
Be Thou still my strength and shield.

When I tread the verge of Jordan,
Bid my anxious fears subside;
Death of death, and hell’s destruction
Land me safe on Canaan’s side:
Songs of praises, songs of praises,
I will ever give to Thee;
I will ever give to Thee. 

✓ Abide With Me

Written by pastor Henry Francis Lyte (1793-1847) 

Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

Come not in terror, as the King of kings,
But kind and good, with healing in Thy wings;
Tears for all woes, a heart for every plea.
Come, Friend of sinners, thus abide with me.

Thou on my head in early youth didst smile,
And though rebellious and perverse meanwhile,
Thou hast not left me, oft as I left Thee.
On to the close, O Lord, abide with me.

I need Thy presence every passing hour.
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.

I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me

Abide with me speaks deeply to my soul every single time I listen to it. A wonderful and glorious hymn indeed!!

Another hymn I love is: In Christ Alone.

Featured Image Credit: Kyler Nixon on unsplash.com

Matthew 6:31 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Okay… Let’s just be honest, whenever most people hear anything about religion, their first reaction and instinct is probably to cringe or brush off the whole matter entirely.

Why? Most likely because it is a subject that is associated with extreme cases of fanaticism, it brings about a lot of conflicts and controversies, and even offends easily.

Religion is famously known for: manipulation, stagnation, repression, ignorance, bigotry and is too often a threat to liberty. And rightly so. I do agree. With that said, I recommend you to read two of my posts as well as encourage you to do a personal, extensive, and honest research on your own regarding this matter. Why?

As intellectuals (critical thinkers), I believe we owe it to ourselves to interrogate, examine, and ask hard questions regarding matters touching on faith rather than choosing to ignore them or even worse— follow blind faith. Click here for the first post.

Who speaks the truth with regards to a genuine, sincere and true relationship with God? Is it Buddha? Muhammad? Jesus? Zoroaster? Confucius? Joseph Smith? Guru Nanak? Krishna? Among others? Find out on this second post:

Why Jesus Stands Out

My heart overflows with a goodly matter; I speak the things which I have made touching the king: My tongue is the pen of a ready writer. Psalms 45:1

Thank you for reading this blog. Feel free to share it with others whenever and wherever.🙂

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