#200 years of Methodism in Leamington Spa
Songs of Praise Circuit service, Sunday 8th October 6:30 pm
John Wesley tells us to 'sing lustily and with a good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead or half asleep, but lift up your voice with strength'.
So it was that a sizeable congregation came together to do what Methodists do famously, sing (in this case ten) mostly well-known hymns and songs.
Three of our local preachers chose readings from the Bible and explained what they meant to them, and our Minister, Andy Laird closed the service by exhorting us to be active in spreading the light. He also referred to the Churches without Walls initiative that this circuit intends join in a year's time.
Most of the songs were stalwarts of Methodism, which was appropriate since 200 years ago the notion of singing them was still modern, and many tunes were unashamedly secular. At least one of the tunes, to 'Thine be the Glory', was written in the eighteenth century and the rest stretched through the ages as far as the present time, with two Townend and Getty songs and 'Give thanks to the Lord our God and King'. Just one, Singing the Faith number 407, 'Hear the call of the Kingdom', was less well known and caused some interest owing to its crusading, rhythmic style.
People love to come together and sing, and maybe we should give ourselves the opportunity to do this more often. It was a good example of what fellowship means.