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Internet God

Internet Hymn

Internet God

In preparing for the Eucharist celebrating 10 years online, I tweeted and facebooked seeking a hymn which acknowledges the Internet. The reactions mirror the discomfort that many Christians and many churches have with the Internet, certainly a lack of seeing it (in practice) as “good,” yet another God-given tool, and a place for mission and ministry.

Reactions to my “is there a hymn which acknowledges the Internet?” were mostly along the lines of “I hope not”; “I hope this doesn’t exist”; “I’m sure @UnvirtuousAbbey would compose one for you!” Many turned it into a joke (“He’s Got the World Wide Web in His Hands?”)

Thankfully @Rev_Gareth saw my tweet and responded with his lyrics:

Jesus, hope of saints and sinners,
yours the name we’re called to share.
Hillside teacher, story-weaver
and the heartbeat of our prayer.
You invite us all to join you
at the Father’s Kingdom call:
so the friends of heaven gather
to declare the Friend of All.

Where we nurse a fading image
of the Kingdom drawing near,
build upon our silent longing
make your vision crystal-clear.
Let our lives and lips reveal you
in the journey we’ve begun:
so that hope, in being faithful,
loves ‘til death is overrun.

Passing fame and fading glory
are the hallmarks of our age.
Give us voices to declare you,
Jesus, Lord on every page.
Hallelujah, friend of sinners,
yours the profile we would own:
yours the call to closer friendship,
yours the invitation home.

My friend, the Rev Dr Pete Phillips from CODEC at Durham, UK, asked if I knew of any hymns suitable for the world of social networking. I didn’t, so wrote the following one. You can sing it to many tunes but I favourBlaenwern, usually used for Love Divine, all Loves Excelling.

Copyright © 2011 Gareth Hill Publishing/Song Solutions CopyCare, 14 Horsted Square, Uckfield, TN22 1QG www.songsolutions.org

We sang it to the tune Hyfrydol.

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5 thoughts on “Internet Hymn”

  1. It is excellent, and to a sensible meter which has many good tunes from which to choose. Strong in theology, poetry and meter.

  2. Jonathan Streeter

    I just joined a book reading group at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and found I was the youngest one there (at age 55!).

    When the suggestion arose as to how to keep in contact, the members wanted a PHONE list. When another suggested we keep an e-mail list, a number of people objected, saying that they reject the “online world” and don’t participate in it. (Thank goodness I didn’t mention my idea that we set up a Facebook page or Yahoo group!).

    Saying that the “internet is bad” simply because it not the same as face-to-face communications is like saying “libraries are bad” because inevitably they contain some terrible books.

    It is our god-given ability to use our insight, wisdom, and experience to select the various tools of this world that help us create community. How can the internet be simply rejected as a potential tool for salvation?!

    Alas, I chose to read the book on my iPad and certainly don’t think I’ll be bringing it next week….

    1. Rejecting the “online world” and not participating in it, Jonathan – a liturgical rite springs to mind…

      Do you reject the online world?
      I do.

      And all its works?
      I do.

      And all its empty promises?
      I do.

      I’m trying to think of the actual ritual: phone smashing; iPad burning;…

      Easter Season Blessings.

  3. Introit: Vocem iucunditatis, with psalm 100: O be joyful in the Lord all ye lands.

    Or, introit: Omnis terra, with the same psalm.
    Or, introit: Misericordia Domini.
    Or, introit: Iubilate Deo.

    All these introits mention the whole world praising God unanimously. What in times past was virtually possible, it is now actually possible; so these Bible texts are literally more actual than when they were written.

    At Mass, people should sing Bible; sung ancient poetry is good for the divine office; modern poetry for the after-service coffee.

    1. “At Mass, people should sing Bible; sung ancient poetry is good for the divine office; modern poetry for the after-service coffee.” a great concept. Blessings, George.

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