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People that manage, manipulate markets – Luke 16:1-13

This hymn reflects on the lectionary Gospel reading for this coming Sunday – Luke 16:1-13

People that manage, manipulate markets,
using their skills just to maximise gain.
This is the focus that holds their attention,
working for profit, their purpose is plain.


Stewards work hard for their own satisfaction,
building on networks of interest and need,
moulding, with passion, each new situation,
earning is motive and profit is creed.


How single-minded is our Christian service?
Can we see Christ there in poverty's face?
What is our vision, our main motivation,
selfish enhancement, or self-giving grace.

© Andrew Pratt 3/9/2013 Please include on your CCL return

Words © 2013 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.

Tunes: STEWARDSHIP; LIEBSTER IMMANUEL, ST NINIAN (Dykes)

Metre: 11.10.11.10

A hymn on the death of Queen Elizabeth II 8th September 2022

A hymn on the death of Queen Elizabeth 11 

Once a woman heard a message,
telling of her father’s death,
spinning life round on a pinhead -
causing her to catch her breath.
From that day a life of service
putting others first of all,
meant a change of her direction,
yet she saw this as God’s call.

Celebrate her tour of duty,
duty built on faith and love,
ceaseless run since her Accession,
life committed, hand in glove.
Even though some question kingship,
all would witness cov’nant grace,
promise made, tasks undertaken,
never knowing what she’d face.

So we stand commemorating
One we seek to recognise -
grown in wisdom, dedication,
rest and peace her final prize.
Now, whatever our perspective,
may we be forever bound
in communion with our neighbours,
finding grace on heaven’s ground.

Andrew Pratt (4/2/2022 & 8/9/2022)
Words © 2022 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd
Metre: 8 7 8 7 D
Tune: MARATHON (Vaughan Williams); RUSTINGTON; BETHANY (Smart)

A time for decisions – a hymn – What are the gifts we would treasure most highly

John Wesley once referred to the Methodists as ‘a peculiar people’. One of our peculiarities is treating September as the beginning of a New Year. 

At another level we live in a world in conflict and, in the UK with a government with a new Prime Minister.
All of us together are faced with decisions.
 
At a time of decision for the people of Israel Moses challenged them – ‘I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live’. (Deuternomy30: 19)

The following hymn asks what choosing life might mean for us today.

1	What are the gifts we would treasure most highly:
	freedom or justice or money or wealth;
	food for the hungry, or drink for the thirsty,
	love for our children, or power, or health?
	 
2	Once God had given a choice to the people:
	they could decide to choose life or choose death.
	They were encouraged towards life's enhancement,
	shunning the ways that would quench life and breath.
	 
3	What does it mean for ourselves at this moment,
        challenged by God, as to what we should choose?
	What does ‘life’ mean, for each friend, for each neighbour, 
        what will encourage and never abuse?
	 
4	Now at each crisis, each time of decision,
	save us from selfishness, things that oppress;
	help us, O God, to be wise, never grasping,
	help us to cherish those things you would bless.

Andrew Pratt (born 1948)
Words © 2011 alt by the author 2022 © Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
alt 2022 by the author. 
Metre: 11 10 11 10
Tune: EPIPHANY HYMN

Broken buildings, flooded rivers – a hymn for Pakistan amid the floods

1          Broken buildings, flooded rivers
            foaming like a liquid hell;
            jagged rocks and raging waters,
            currents twisting break the swell
            into such a tortured maelstrom;
            people reach and lives are saved;
            human beings loved and treasured
            where the waters heaved and raved.

2          Devastation, ruined farmland,
            crops destroyed compound the threat,
            images assail our conscience,
            sights we never will forget;
            here where homes had offered comfort
            degradation meets our eyes,
            while the thunder of the waters
            drowns the sound of human cries.

3          God, we cry, as lives are wasted,
            hold us when all else is lost;
            where the floods have brought destruction
            hold us, help us share this cost.
            Lift us out of dereliction,
            help us reach to those in need,
            love them till all fear has foundered,
            till they know they’re safe and freed.

Andrew E Pratt (born 1948)

Metre: 8 7 8 7 D

Tune: HYFRYDOL

Words © 2022 © Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd., adapted from ‘Swirling winds and raging oceans’ © 2017 Stainer and Bell Ltd.