Touch

Walking on with Christ through Easter

Apr 2015    

Camina, Pueblo De Dios

(Walk On, O People of God)

Refrain:

Walk on, O People of God;

walk on, O people of God!

A new law, God’s new alliance,

all creation is reborn.

Walk on, O people of God;

walk on, O people of God!

 

Look on Calvary’s summit;

on the rock there towers a cross;

death that gives birth to new living,

a new people, a new light.

Christ has brought us salvation

with his death and rising again.

Everything comes to new birthing,

all creation is reborn.

Refrain

 

Christ takes into his body

all our sin, enslavement and pain;

as he destroys them he brings us

life’s abundance, life’s new joy.

Christ brings reconciliation

to all things and people with God.

Nature bursts into new flowering,

all creation is reborn.

Refrain

 

Heaven and earth are embracing,

and our souls find pardon at last.

Now heaven’s gates are reopened

to the sinner, to us all.

Israel walks a journey;

now we live, salvation’s our song;

Christ’s resurrection has freed us.

There are new worlds to explore.

Refrain

 

Words and music:

Cesáreo Gabaraín; trans. George Lockwood

Judith Mosomos is Acting Director of Worship and Church Music at the Methodist School of Music, and a member of Kampong Kapor Methodist Church.

 

Easter is the day of greatest celebration in the church year. It is the first day of the “Great Fifty Days”. The Sundays following Easter are called 2nd Sunday of Easter, 3rd Sunday of Easter and so on till we reach the 7th Sunday of Easter. (The 40th day after Easter is Ascension Day which leads to Pentecost.)

 

With seven Sundays to celebrate Eastertide, what hymns do we have to retell the resurrection story? The United Methodist Hymnal (UMH) has 15 hymns for Easter – UMH 302-327. Let us look at UMH 305 ‘Walk On, O People of God’.

 

This was composed by a Spanish priest, Cesáreo Gabaraín. Gabaraín started to write hymns at the age of 30. He has written over 500 liturgical songs, four of which are in the UMH. The hymns he wrote were inspired by his personal experience in ministry. He was very much involved with children, youth, adults, nuns, laity, and especially the marginalised and those in need. This is reflected in the songs he wrote (see UMH 305, 344, 583, 637).

 

Singing hymns of this nature may not be easy. Two possible reasons come to mind.

 

Firstly, the music is foreign to the ear. Hymn 305 was composed in a Spanish folk tradition. It is a style we need to explore.

 

Secondly, like most of the hymns, the text is quite profound. It calls us to pay more attention to the words we are putting in our mouth. If we sing “Christ’s resurrection has freed us. There are new worlds to explore”, how should we translate that to action? Which world is there to explore? The consumer world? The world where children need food and education? The world that continuously seeks peace and justice?

 

Profound as the text may be, it will help cultivate our faith and our little knowledge about the resurrection. It will keep us wondering about its significance in our identity as Christians.

 

Gabaraín summons us to “walk on, O people of God!” I hear this with much encouragement and hope; even as life brings more challenges ahead, we will embrace His salvation and all the promises salvation brings us.

Picture by 1971yes/Bigstock.com

REACH OUT

Giving Time to Bless Others

Giving Time to Bless Others

Nov 2018     Looking ahead to The Giving Methodist (TGM) 2019, we chatted with two first-time volunteers during this year’s TGM. Phyllis Han works full-time in human resources and worships at Charis Methodist Church. I heard an announcement about TGM in my church and thought it would be a good way to start...
LAOS DISASTER RELIEF: AID FOR THE AIDERS

LAOS DISASTER RELIEF: AID FOR THE AIDERS

Nov 2018     A hydroelectric dam in Southeast Laos collapsed on 23 July 2018, leading to widespread destruction and displacement of villagers throughout the province of Attapeu. In the days following the disaster, more than 3,000 Lao people clung from trees and rooftops as they awaited rescue. At least 31 died and scores are...