New LDS hymnbook

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Joshua
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Joined: 24 May 2019, 12:17

New LDS hymnbook

Post by Joshua » 24 May 2019, 14:58

The Church has announced a new hymnbook and has asked us for feedback. I was super excited about it, but there hasn't been as much discussion as I had hoped. There have been some great posts, but I wanted to go further in depth on different areas of improvement. I have started a web site that I hope can be a place where collectively, we can find ways to make sacrament meeting a more positive experience for everyone. Here is the web site:

(Admin Note): If anyone is interested in the actual website Joshua has created, send him a PM and talk about it privately. It is NOT anti-Mormon, but is is an organized effort that we cannot endorse officially here at this site.

We have had our last hymnal for 34 years. There is a lot of work that goes into putting one together and it will help shape the Church for decades to come. Many people are brought into the Church through the power of hymns but others leave because of problems with the hymns. The Church is asking for our feedback, and if we respond with ways to improve the spirituality of the hymns, it will help strengthen people's testimony and help the Church to grow.

Let me give you some background on why I am doing this. There were days that I just didn't feel comfortable at Church. Some of the things I heard and saw didn't sit well with what I believed. There were times I felt the spirit so strong in class and in quorum that I could almost feel God wrap his arms around me, but there were other times I felt cold and detached unable to reconcile what I was hearing with the truth I knew to be true.

As I began my soul searching in earnest, I began to realize many of the things I had the hardest time with was not about the doctrine, but the culture. In fact, sometimes the culture went in direct opposition to the revealed doctrine. Many of people continued to pass on what they were taught as children and didn't bother reading the church's new essays where they specifically disavowed the idea that interracial marriage is a sin, that skin color indicates divine favor, or that our race predetermines us for specific blessings. I still had to sit through lessons where they talked about how Isaac married Rebecca or Jacob married Rachael because interracial marriage is a sin.

So I began to look into what was could be done to change the culture to be more in line with the doctrine. I realized a lot of our culture is enshrined in our hymnbook, which hasn't been updated since the Church has disavowed these theories. Even in the last priesthood session of General Conference (April 2019) the choir and congregation sang about heathen nations and the chosen race. There are songs about the wickedness of Israel, how Ephraim will be crowned with special blessings, how the gift of women is to be gentle, and how those who fight against Zion will be smitten. This isn't the gospel of inclusion that I know God wants it to be. Our hymnbook should be free of racism, sexism, and violence.

There is a committee in charge of the changes. They specifically said they want songs that fix some these issues, but it is impossible for them to understand how the hymns affect everyone. That is why they need to hear our stories. They need to hear how we have been affected by the hymns.

Has anyone else been affected by the hymns? What did you do about it? What would make it better? What would we change so that other people don't have to go through what we have been through?

Curt Sunshine
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by Curt Sunshine » 24 May 2019, 19:01

This can be a good topic, focused on specific hymns that concern us - but I would suggest balancing it with specific hymns that we want to remain in the new hymnbook and why.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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DarkJedi
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by DarkJedi » 25 May 2019, 05:58

I was very frankly surprised at how few people had responded to the survey of favorite hymns, hymns they'd like removed, and hymns they'd like added. This article in church news said that only 400 had responded (I saw it recently and I think there was an accompanying Deseret News article I can't find at the moment): https://www.thechurchnews.com/members/2 ... nded-47492 400 out of 16 million is not any kind of sample IMO. I don't disagree with the favorites, most of them were on my list of submitted favorites, and some of the suggestions for new hymns were also on my list ("Here I Am Lord" was at the top of my list and didn't make the top of the list from the other 399 apparently). I am a little surprised 'If You Could Hie to Kolob" is on the the list of favorites. You still can respond until July 1: https://www.lds.org/music/new-music?lang=eng

Yes, Joshua, I have been affected both ways by hymns. There are times when I have looked around the room and thought "I can't believe we're singing this, much less with non-members here." I am one of the "louder" singers in our small ward. Nowadays if I don't like a hymn I simply don't sing it (sometimes I "go to the bathroom" sometimes I don't - usually not now that rest hymns are more rare). My family and closer friends and associates know which hymns I don't like and why. Back when the initial announcement was made in June of last year we had a thread on the subject here: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=9029
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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SamBee
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by SamBee » 27 May 2019, 06:59

Most people are not aware of this survey and no deadline has been given. I have never heard it announced. Also it only applies to the English hymnbook.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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SilentDawning
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by SilentDawning » 30 May 2019, 05:02

SamBee wrote:
27 May 2019, 06:59
Most people are not aware of this survey and no deadline has been given. I have never heard it announced. Also it only applies to the English hymnbook.
Same here -- anything to make Sacrament meeting more interesting is on my list of things to do. I never heard about the survey either.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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DarkJedi
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by DarkJedi » 30 May 2019, 06:11

SamBee wrote:
27 May 2019, 06:59
Most people are not aware of this survey and no deadline has been given. I have never heard it announced. Also it only applies to the English hymnbook.
About a year ago it was in church news and was prominently on the website. It's still on the site but you have to look for it. Here's a link to the original announcement, which also contains links to the survey and submission of your own music: https://www.lds.org/church/news/church- ... k?lang=eng The deadline for the survey and music submission is July 1, 2019. The new hymnbook is still years away.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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nibbler
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by nibbler » 30 May 2019, 07:15

DarkJedi wrote:
25 May 2019, 05:58
I was very frankly surprised at how few people had responded to the survey of favorite hymns, hymns they'd like removed, and hymns they'd like added. This article in church news said that only 400 had responded (I saw it recently and I think there was an accompanying Deseret News article I can't find at the moment): https://www.thechurchnews.com/members/2 ... nded-47492 400 out of 16 million is not any kind of sample IMO.
Wow. I made up nearly a quarter of a percent of all respondents. :thumbup:
If one dream dies, dream another dream. If you get knocked down, get back up and go again.
― Joel Osteen

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DarkJedi
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by DarkJedi » 30 May 2019, 09:30

nibbler wrote:
30 May 2019, 07:15
DarkJedi wrote:
25 May 2019, 05:58
I was very frankly surprised at how few people had responded to the survey of favorite hymns, hymns they'd like removed, and hymns they'd like added. This article in church news said that only 400 had responded (I saw it recently and I think there was an accompanying Deseret News article I can't find at the moment): https://www.thechurchnews.com/members/2 ... nded-47492 400 out of 16 million is not any kind of sample IMO.
Wow. I made up nearly a quarter of a percent of all respondents. :thumbup:
I think (and hope) there were actually more than 400 responses, the date on that article would indicate it was recycled. Nevertheless, it is apparently possible to answer the survey more than once. I may have to do some more to get my favored addition (Here I Am Lord) on the list. :P I also thought it interesting that while the survey does specifically ask which hymns (if any) you'd like dropped, those weren't mentioned in the article.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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nibbler
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by nibbler » 30 May 2019, 09:45

DarkJedi wrote:
30 May 2019, 09:30
I may have to do some more to get my favored addition (Here I Am Lord) on the list. :P
The lord can find people's car keys no prob but has to have hints to find you. :angel: :angel:
If one dream dies, dream another dream. If you get knocked down, get back up and go again.
― Joel Osteen

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DarkJedi
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Re: New LDS hymnbook

Post by DarkJedi » 30 May 2019, 17:01

nibbler wrote:
30 May 2019, 09:45
DarkJedi wrote:
30 May 2019, 09:30
I may have to do some more to get my favored addition (Here I Am Lord) on the list. :P
The lord can find people's car keys no prob but has to have hints to find you. :angel: :angel:
Ever seen the TBS series Miracle Workers? Just reminded me of some really funny scenes, I think first or second episodes. (Yes, lost car keys are involved.)
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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