When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of glory died.
I do not remember, as a young student in an Anglican school, learning specific Good Friday and Easter songs. It happened too long ago but I can still recollect being taught, for both my music classes and Religious Knowledge (R.K.) lessons, by Mr. V. Q.
Chapel Time on Friday morning was when we got our energy together and sang our hearts out, accompanied by a truly unique church organ played by Mr Q.
It was the most enjoyable period on the time table and I loved every moment. This weekly class was usually conducted by a kind Reverend Dr D.D. C.
During special events, the school would use the majestic cathedral, beside City Hall MRT, for prayers, blessings and hymns. We were thrilled when we first entered it and found the grandeur architecture awesome but the visits seemed too few. There were not many inaugurations yearly.
There were many other hymns and I do remember a few like, Forty Days and Forty Nights (1856), Onward Christian Soldiers (1865/1871), All Things Bright And Beautiful (1848) and All People That On Earth Do Dwell (1650). And not forgetting the School Hymn. Woe betide the student who didn't know both, which included the School Song.
Post School Days
He touched me, oh he touched me
And oh the joy that floods my soul.
Since I left school, there was this period when I only listened to Christmas carols on the radio, vinyl records, cassettes and CD's. But because of my interest in pops, I had nearly two dozen songs recorded by an artiste who kept me in tune.
The CD which I have till today is Take My Hand, Elvis Presley Gospel Favourites. This recording is a memorabilia among Presley fans and includes classics like I Believe (1953), Amazing Grace (1779), Put Your Hand In The Hand (1970), Joshua Fit The Battle (1865), How Great Thou Art (1885) and others.
Then the Presley specials, Peace In The Valley (1937), Crying In The Chapel (1953), Take My Hand Precious Lord (1844) and He Touched Me (1964). There are twenty songs in all.
As the years went by, touched and inspired with this genre of music I started collecting again. One I learnt was Because He Lives (1971). Written two hundred years later after Wondrous Cross, this particular song was written by William Gaither in the 60's.
Gaither was an American singer and songwriter of the southern gospel and contemporary christian music. He Touched Me (You Tube Two), the Presley favourite which became a hit, was the William Gaither breakthrough song.
Forty days and forty nights
Thou was fasting in the wild
Forty days and forty nights
Tempted and yet undefiled...
There is a second part to this piece; it will surface in another posting.
Have a Good Friday and a Happy Easter.
is addressed to God for praise, worship, adoration and prayer. It allows us to confess our sins to God, claim His mercy and promises, and pledge our loyalty and faithful service.
The Gospel song
is addressed to the people, warn them of the consequences of sin, give the promise of liberty, peace, joy and heaven. With it we can appeal directly to the people to do likewise.
Both Hymns and Gospels are used in Evangelistic churches.
(If errors are found in this article please write to advise; I am a novice with religious music.)
You Tube videos of Cliff Richard, Elvis Presley and Alabama from:
(1) Sir Cliff Richard
(2) you tube addict cyber space enthusiast
Dates of song composition have been taken from WIKI.
ST. ANDREW'S SCHOOL SINGAPORE MEMORY TRAIL.