Singing the Faith: 712 (CD29 #12)
Fred Kaan
“St Columba (Erin)”
87.87. (Iambic)

Alternative tune

Clive Grey, an enthusiast for Welsh hymn tunes, sent us this arrangement of R.H. Prichard's tune, Elizabeth.

Download music (PDF)

Prichard's most well-known tune is Hyfrydol (used four times in Singing the Faith!). Elizabeth is quite different in tone, and arguably more four-square and "Victorian"-sounding than either Hyfrydol or the Irish melody St Columba (Erin), which is the set tune for this hymn. Yet, it has a gentle quality appropriate to Fred Kaan's words, not least in the genuinely tender, falling final phrase.

The Dictionary of Welsh Biography says that Rowland Huw Prichard (pictured), "laboured throughout his life in the cause of music and congregational singing". Hyfrydol was included in Cyfaill y Cantorion, published by Prichard in 1844 and containing about 40 hymn tunes, most of them composed by himself. His work also appeared in a number of other collections. "He moved to Holywell in 1880 to serve as an official under the Welsh Flannel Manufacturing Company", and died in Holywell in 1887 aged 75

Read more about Welsh tunes and hymns in Singing the Faith in Saint David - Songs for Dewi Sant.

Also see the tune by R.H. Prichard that Clive suggests as an alternative for I heard the voice of Jesus say, StF 248.

Another hymn for peace

See also Adam Tice's hymn Peace to you, my loved ones - both moving and challenging. Like Fred Kaan, he asks what peace looks like:

Peace is grace in action;
peace is love in deeds.
Peace becomes a garden;
peace springs up from seeds.

Adam (pictured) writes out of the Mennonite tradition into which he was ordained as pastor. This hymn is set to a lovely, and memorable, tune ("Lockley") by Sally Ann Morris. It is available via GIA's "Unbound" series, which makes it easy to read and listen to the score before purchasing it as a download.

Also see: We pray for peace (StF 719)