While the nations guard their borders,

While the nations guard their borders, 
cherished cultures, ways of life,
people struggle for survival,
children die while fleeing strife.
Can we hear with calm acceptance
what the news has got to tell?
Can we claim to follow Jesus
while the world drifts into hell?


Hell is where there’s no more loving,
close at hand, not out of sight,
what we make denying others
grace of love, or hope of light.
When compassion’s drained and stranded,
voices might as well be dumb
human cries that we’ve avoided
fall on ears both blocked and numb.


Christ is calling in each murmur,
in each whisper framing need,
silence louder than God’s thunder,
loud enough to quell our greed;
yet we close our ears, our senses,
dreading every troubling fact,
lest we feel the pain of others
forcing us to rise and act.

©Andrew Pratt
26/11/2021



Hymn responding to Greta Thunberg ahead of and following COP 26 – Blue planet, rising, soaring through the cosmos – Now with a new tune by Frances S. Drake

Blue planet, rising, soaring through the cosmos,
was lent in trust for us to tend and care
while children, young in wisdom, call in anguish, 
for all they see now fills them with despair.
The wonder of the sky has drawn us upwards, 
our eyes diverted by the moon and stars, 
and as we dream we lose our moral compass, 
and in our greed we grasp creation, call it ours.


Time runs away, our life on earth is finite, 
young prophets calling, needing us to act 
are crying out, lamenting for our planet, 
while ‘adults’ sleep, denying fear and fact.
Still others stand, immune, ignore the future, 
absolved from fault for all that comes to pass.
When will we grasp the need for urgent action, 
see clearly, not net curtained, or through frosted glass?


While sands of time run down, are gone and finished, 
in fear of change we hanker for the past, 
but life on earth is threatened by inaction, 
as lethargy and greed resist and last. 
Good God forgive us for each fault and faction, 
unwillingness to change to save this earth. 
God give us ears to hear the words of wisdom 
that we might save this planet, cradle of our birth.


Andrew Pratt 29/10/2021 – Responding to Greta Thunberg 
ahead of and following COP 26.

Words © 2021 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.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: 11.10.11.10.11.10.11.12
Tune: BLUE PLANET RISING; LONDONDERRY AIR
BLUE PLANET RISING – AUDIO – Copyright Frances S. Drake

In the Bible sinful action sees God’s punishment unfurled – https://bramhallmethodists.org.uk/scienceandprayer/

In the Bible sinful action
sees God’s punishment unfurled.
Seismic faults can find their reason
in God’s shaking of the world.
Dualism, human freedom,
‘best of all’ this fractured earth?
Does God punish us for actions
which negate our human worth?

But today does retribution,
witnessed through earth’s fractured crust,
make much sense of God in action
when our cities turn to dust?
Do our people crushed and broken
act as warning, point to God?
Or is good news, clouded, hidden,
buried deep beneath the sod?

Much like Job, we seek an answer,
craft theology with care,
looking for a simple reason,
find new scapegoats standing there.
If we were more deeply honest
we might find it’s Christ who dies,
God who suffers in the present
when we hide behind our lies.

When we value wealth or nation,
see resources to be owned,
see the poor as simple objects,
their humanity dethroned;
then what may be seen as natural
rests on our incompetence,
or on human greed and evil
and on loving’s reticence.

Tune: LUX EOI (StF 400/764)
or ABBOTSLEIGH (UMC 584)
Metre: 8.7.8.7 D

Written in response to Rev’d Professor David Chester’s Seminar on Earthquakes, Volcanoes and God: Theological Perspectives on Natural Disaster
Andrew Pratt, Words © 2019 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.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.

Maundy Thursday – Good Friday – Pilate

God or self? the timeless question,
greeting all of humankind.
When we meet Christ in our neighbour
God and self should be aligned.

Will we wash our hands of duty
when decisions must be made,
simply standing at on the sidelines
when the action could be played?

Will we emphasise compassion,
or the greed of our desire,
light the lamp of love among us
or extinguish hidden fire?

Will we build up walls of hatred
shielding us from human need,
or reach out with loving kindness
to the ones we ought to feed?

When we meet Christ in our neighbour
God and self should be aligned.
God or self? the timeless question,
greeting all of humankind.
Andrew Pratt 14/4/2019 After a sermon by Tim Simms
Tune: ALL FOR JESUS
Words © 2019 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.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.