Highlights

Hosanna

Jun 2020    

On Palm Sunday, Bishop Emeritus Dr Robert Solomon preached at Wesley MC.

In his sermon, Bishop Emeritus Dr Solomon shared that while we do not have the palms, the singing of Hosanna, the children and the whole festivity of Palm Sunday, “I suspect it is to force us not just to join a crowd but to experience the Lord Jesus Christ riding into our hearts… the limitation we have today does not stop us from worshipping, lifting our hearts in praise of Jesus. It is as if the Lord has chosen to ride into our hearts so that we can focus our hearts on him.”

“Experience the Lord Jesus Christ riding into our hearts…”—these words struck Angela Ong Goh, and she felt prompted to respond. Inspired, she scribbled down some words, after which she proceeded to the piano to add the melody. “Hosanna”! A new song was composed.

Pondering upon COVID-19 and the Bishop Emeritus’ message, the song “Hosanna” points us to the reality of not being able to worship corporately in church. Even so, the refrain encourages us to persevere. We can still raise our voices in praise in our homes. But at a time like this, we need to ask God to give us joy. This alludes to Philippians 4:4—“Rejoice in the Lord, always!”

Unity, a theme that rings out in the third and fourth stanzas, is a virtue that is needed for any endeavour to us to succeed, whether as a church, community or nation. Along with unity, we need to ask God to grant us humility and seek His blessing so that, no matter what, we can be proud to sing “Hosanna!”

“Hosanna”, a Greek word often heard on Palm Sunday, is an exclamation of praise that means “save now!” By the first century AD, the word was no longer used literally as a cry for rescue from enemies, but had become an idiomatic expression of joy and jubilation.1

If “Hosanna” has become an expression of joy and jubilation, I personally think this song can be used and sung at this time as a response to COVID-19.

Hosanna

I sing Hosanna when at home
I sing Hosanna though alone
No palm to palm greeting we give
Confined to home so we can live

I sing Hosanna from the heart
From friends and family far apart
Uncertain times, when fears arise
Look at the world, God hears our cries

Hosanna, we lift our voice in praise
Hosanna, our prayers to you we raise
In trials, give us joy
This sickness, you destroy

Hosanna, we lift our voice in praise
Hosanna, our hearts to you we raise
Set our hearts ablaze
Hosanna till the end of our days

We sing Hosanna in one accord
From home to home to our Lord
United together, one spirit, strong
Distanced, not forlorn

We sing Hosanna loud and proud
Spirit united, we are a crowd
Bless the Lord oh my soul
Hosanna we extol

Refrain

Words and Music: Angela Ong Goh

The tune can be found at https://youtu.be/frrpV1yA_Y4


1 Sean A. Harrison, gen. ed. New Living Translation Study Bible, 2nd ed. Carol Stream, Illinois: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. 2008, 1674.

Angie has been serving as a pianist in Pentecost MC for 40 years, a ministry through which she believes God is using and blessing her. She is an English Literature teacher in a secondary school.

Credit: Judith Laoyan-Mosomos is the Director for Worship and Church Music at the Methodist School of Music, and a member of Kampong Kapor Methodist Church.

 

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