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We Lift Up Our Hearts

Cover image cortesy ofTy Mam Duw Poor Clare Colettine Community
Used by permission.  www.poorclarestmd.org

A prayer of thanks, simple and true
Poet/Lyricist: 
Richard Fewkes

Richard Fewkes’ prayer of thanksgiving rings simple and true, from its very first words: “For the sun and the dawn, which we did not create, we lift up our hearts in thanks.”  This lyrical setting offers the children’s choir a gracious stand-alone melody, with a well-crafted descant for the adults.  Appropriate for intergenerational or combined choirs, in any interfaith setting, at any time of year.

This song is included on the CD, Finally On My Way To Yes, which may be ordered below.

Individual tracks may be downloaded at the following online stores:
 

If desired, the adults and children may learn their parts separately, joining together in one final rehearsal.

ORDER MUSIC DIRECTLY FROM SEAFARER PRESS:
Look Listen Instrumentation/Voicing Duration Level Item Price Quantity
http://www.seafarerpress.com/sites/seafarerpress.advantagelabs.com/files/samples/we_lift_up_our_hearts.mp3 S (unison children's choir), SATB, piano - Choral Score
3'00" E SEA-021-02 $2.50
Sheet Music
http://www.seafarerpress.com/sites/seafarerpress.advantagelabs.com/files/samples/we_lift_up_our_hearts.mp3 S (unison children's choir), SATB, piano - Choral Score
3'00" E SEA-021-02D $1.75
Licensed PDF
http://www.seafarerpress.com/sites/seafarerpress.advantagelabs.com/files/works_variant_audio_files/finally_on_my_way_to_yes_0.mp3 Finally on My Way to Yes - CD
60'00" SEA-CD-01 $10.00
CD

We Lift Up Our Hearts

Poem by Richard Fewkes
Adapted by Elizabeth Alexander

For the sun and the dawn which we did not create;
For the moon and the evening which we did not design;
For food which we plant but cannot grow;
For friends and loved ones we have not earned and cannot buy;
For all gifts which come from a source beyond ourselves,
We lift up our hearts in thanks.

For morning bathed in golden light...
For raindrops cool and snowflakes white...
For the darkness that brings on the peaceful night...
For all the many sleeping seeds we sow...
For friends and loved ones we have not earned and cannot buy;
For all gifts which come from a source beyond ourselves,
We lift up our hearts in thanks.

Original prayer by Richard Fewkes:
For the sun and the dawn which we did not create;
For the moon and the evening which we did not make;
For food which we plant but cannot grow;
For friends and loved ones we have not earned and cannot buy;
For this gathered company which welcomes us as we are,
          from wherever we have come;
For all our free churches that keep us human
          and encourage us in our quest for beauty, truth, and love;
For all things which come to us as gifts of being from sources beyond ourselves;
Gifts of life and love and friendship
We lift up our hearts in thanks this day.

Composer's Note: 

My family has spoken Richard M. Fewkes' blessing as our table grace for the past 20 years.  This is no small praise, for I had exhaustive criteria for this prayer:  it needed to be simple enough for a young child to learn, beautiful in language and form, and appropriate in the presence of a guest of any faith.  It was a pleasure to set Fewkes words to music, so that I could share his generous sentiment with others.

Performers: 

Choirs of First Unitarian Parish of Norwell, MA - Bernadette Nadeau, conductor (Norwell, MA)   * Premiere

Children's Choir of Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte - Donna Fisher, conductor (Charlotte, NC)

Choir of Unitarian Universalist Church of Savannah - Kelly Blackmarr Carlile, conductor (Savannah, GA)

Choirs of Community Church of Chapel Hill - Glenn Mehrbach, conductor (Chapel Hill, NC)

Choirs of First Congregational Unitarian Church - Ray Bauwens, conductor (Harvard, MA)

Choirs of First Jefferson Unitarian-Universalist Church - Roy Redman, conductor (Fort Worth, TX)

Choirs of First Unitarian Church of Ithaca - Elizabeth Alexander, conductor (Ithaca, NY)

Choirs of First Unitarian Church of Portland - Mark Slegers, conductor (Portland, OR)

Camerata Singers of Muskegon - Floyd Farmer, conductor (Muskegon & Grand Rapids, MI)

Choirs of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Nashville - Jason Shelton, conductor (Nashville, TN)

Choirs of Unity Church-Unitarian - Ruth Palmer, conductor (Saint Paul, MN)

Choirs of First Unitarian Universalist Church of Des Moines - Moira Leu, conductor (Des Moines, IA)

Choirs of First Universalist Society of Hartland Four Corners - Patricia Talbot, conductor (Hartland Four Corners, VT)

Choirs of the Unitarian-Universalist Fellowship of Corvallis - Susan Peck, conductor (Corvallis, OR)Donna Fisher

Choirs of Unitarian Church of Charleston - Martha Welch, conductor (Charleston, SC)

Choirs of Unitarian Society of Hartford - Mattie Banzhaf, conductor (Hartford, CT)

Choirs of Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Gainesville - Ruth Lewis, conductor (Gainesville, FL)

Choirs of Unitarian Universalist Society of Sacramento - Mike Reynolds, conductor (Sacramento, CA)

Choirs of Unitarian-Universalist Church of Eugene - Tom Sears, conductor (Eugene, OR)

Choirs of Unitarian-Universalist Society of Sacramento - Mike Reynolds, conductor (Sacramento, CA)

Potomac School Choruses - Jerry Rich, conductor (Arlington, VA)
                   
                                                                                  

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