ArtServe member Geoff Wainwright recently heard, on BBC Songs of Praise, the hymn tune DIVINE MYSTERIES composed by Francis Stansfield (1835-1914). Stansfield also wrote the words Sweet sacrament divine which are still often used, particularly by Roman Catholics. Geoff rather liked the tune, but he felt the words were rather old fashioned and so he wondered whether anyone might like to write some words with more contemporary feel.
The tune is in an unusual metre 66 66 88 66 (Stansfield’s text, strictly speaking, is 66 66 88 6, the last line being repeated). You can see it and hear it here. It can also be found at Common Praise 324, the 'new' Ancient & Modern 464, New English Hymnal 307, and in many of the Kevin Mayhew Hymns Old & New series. Download as a PDF.
A word of warning to those who write to metre rather than to tune: the fifth line has an octave leap on the first two notes, so care will be needed to ensure it is singable, avoiding a weak second word or syllable.
While we don’t want to limit your thoughts, hymns with imagery of arts in worship would be particularly welcome.
Subject to our usual moderation rules, we’ll publish all offerings on the website. Members can Send us a hymn or song using the online form.