Monday, June 30, 2008

Praise God, From Whom All Blessings Flow

Yesterday at my parish (Sunday, June 29th...St. Peter and St. Paul, Apostles) we celebrated the 25th anniversary of my ordination into the Office of the Holy Ministry.  It was a glorious day of joyful thanksgiving to God for the innumerable blessings He has poured out so richly these past twenty-five years.   Loving family members, honored guests, special friends, and dear parishioners all helped to make it a very special day that I will not soon forget.   

The "Common Doxology" is probably the most frequently sung hymn stanza in all Christendom.  Thomas Ken (1637-1711) wrote these words in 1674 and they first appeared in a Manual of Prayers for Use of the Scholars of Winchester College for use by schoolboys.  This doxological stanza appeared with the hymn text for morning, "Awake, My Soul, and With the Sun" (LSB 868) as well as with the hymn text for evening,  "All Praise to Thee, My God, This Night" (LSB 883).  Both these hymns have received wide usage in many English language hymnals. 

     Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
     Praise Him, all creatures here below;
         Praise Him above, ye heav'nly host:
         Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.  Amen.

In today's gender-neutral climate, one nows sees this "politically-correct" version:

       Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
        praise God, all creatures here below;
            praise God above, ye heav'nly host;
            praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Of course, no poet in his/her right mind would ever use "God" repeated so often is such close proximity, but sadly this is where things stand in some circles of the Church.

Here is an even worse alteration of this doxological stanza, with words that hint at themes of feminism and liberation theology.  This version cannot even name the names of the Trinity:

       Praise God who gives all blessings birth
        praise God all creatures on the earth;
            praise God, who makes, sustains, sets free
            one holy God in persons three.  


Orianna Laun said...

The second version is quite redundant. The third is merely nauseating. The only thing that would keep any other non-Christian religious person from singing it is the mention of the Triune God. But without the mention of the names or main jobs of each person of the Trinity, it is merely a watery, vending-machine description of God.

Anonymous said...

How sad to hear you say that. I praise Him, praise Him in the mornin', praise Him in the noontime, praise Him, praise Him, praise Him when the sun goes down!!! I'll gladly pray for you. What a droll comment from you. Isn't the fact that God sent His son to die for YOU enough to spark your faith instead of finding fault in a lovely Christian song. Praise FATHER, SON AND HOLY GHOST!!!