Get Your Music On!

Relief Society Sisters in Sierra Leone singing from the 1985 hymnal

As we’ve mentioned, the Church is developing a new hymnal and Children’s Songbook. The final due date is 1 July 2019, but yesterday the Church issued additional information about what they’re looking for and final call for your opinions about current content.

As mentioned in the May 9 announcement, here are ways to participate:

As for me, I think I’ll take a bit and leaf through the hymnal to prepare for the revision survey. Then I’ll review the doctrinal points of emphasis and decide whether I have anything worth submitting by July 1.

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About Meg Stout

Meg Stout has been an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ (of Latter-day Saints) for decades. She lives in the DC area with her husband, Bryan, and several daughters. She is an engineer by vocation and a writer by avocation. Meg is the author of Reluctant Polygamist, laying out the possibility that Joseph taught the acceptability of plural marriage but may have privately defied the commandment for love of his wife, Emma.

3 thoughts on “Get Your Music On!

  1. General question to all those who served missions outside the US: Were there “favorite” hymns among the populations you served that differed from what might be considered the cultural core hymns of the US church? If so, why do you think that was? Skillful translation? Different melodic preferences?

  2. I served before the 1985 hymnal came out, and I recall that “Hark, All Ye Nations” was a favorite that we didn’t used to have.

    Generally, complex melodies from the older hymnals (pre-1985) have been replaced and the key signatures have been modified where useful to make it easier to sing and reduce the number of accidentals.

    Not a foreign thing, but I’ve heard a preference from a young person in my ward that we focus on God’s love rather than Christ’s extreme pain during the atonement. So things about how Christ died for us might be fine, but words about how thorns pierced His flesh and His blood fell like rain was something this young person found too extreme.

  3. I served in 1992-3 in Spain and we tended to more upbeat hymns. We used many more of those in the back half of the hymnal than my ward does today. But, the branches were small and it was the missionaries rather than the members that led the music and played the piano. 9 times out of 10 the missionaries also selected the music too.

    I found the list interesting. Especially the emphasis on joyful singing. My ward is more of a monotonous drone, although since I don’t sing and have no ear for music I have no right to criticize or complain.

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