Random wedding hymn – On Ilkley Moor

I was asked to write a wedding hymn to the tune of ‘On Ilkley Moor’ and due to my complete inability to work out how to get a normal 8686 metre to fit to the tune, I wrote this instead. I now do understand how to get existing 8686 words to fit, but thought I might as well keep the words.

Jesus made water into wine
For joy and celebration,
Bless-ed abundance as a sign:
Foretaste of heaven, love divine!

In sickness or in health
In poverty or wealth
The greatest gift is love.

What God has joined we’ll not divide:
For love endures for ever.
Faith, hope and love will still abide,
Two lives entwined, lived side by side.

In sickness or in health
In poverty or wealth
The greatest gift is love.

Vows made this joyful, solemn day,
To honour, love and cherish.
This is love’s kind and patient way,
Living the wondrous words we say.

In sickness or in health
In poverty or wealth
The greatest gift is love.

New (first draft) wedding hymn

Well, here’s something. This time the challenge came through twitter (rather than facebook).  The challenge was for a wedding hymn to the tune of Jerusalem (so as to avoid actually singing Jerusalem – which, given the wedding that gave rise to the conversation was in Wales, didn’t seem all that appropriate!).  The most observant of you will spot that I’ve used the second verse tune for both verses (the difference is in the rhythm of the penultimate line).

Here’s my first stab at it, with various people’s suggestions for improvement incorporated (for which many thanks!) – further suggestions are very welcome!

Freely we give, and freely share
All that we have, and all we are,
Our pledge to cherish and embrace,
Made through this covenant of grace.
With soul and body intertwined,
We give ourselves, in heart and mind,
to deeper union day by day,
and walk in step along life’s way.

[Alternative less personal first verse:
Freely to give, and freely share All that we have, and all we are,
A pledge to cherish and embrace, Made through this covenant of grace.
With soul and body intertwined, two lives together, heart and mind,
in deeper union day by day, will walk in step along life’s way.]

Kindle a flame both bright and bold,
Out of the earth bring purest gold,
Turn all our water into wine,
Teach us new songs of joy divine!
Give us your patience, make us kind,
Increase our faith that we may find
that in true love, good Lord, we pray,
we’ll walk together all life’s way.

Hymns for weddings

During a facebook conversation lamenting the over-use of All Things Bright and Beautiful at weddings (and indeed, at baptisms and funerals) a slightly tongue-in-cheek challenge was issued, and in a fit of procrastination I rose (or sank) to it. The fruits of my afternoon’s procrastination are below, and since they are still at the ‘scribbled-on-the-back-of-an-envelope’ stage, I’d welcome comments, criticisms and suggestions for improvement.

This is the first one, and it goes to ‘Lord of the dance’:

Love, faith and hope are free
to all who live abundantly,
So lead us, Lord, wherever we may be
in the dance of life for eternity.

The gift of love is a powerful thing,
Blessed and worn in a golden ring,
The vows are the binding of our lives,
words for all that the heart believes.

The gift of faith is the gift of care,
The words that say, “I will always be there.”
For better, for worse, in joy and pain,
faith brings love to life again.

The gift of hope is a burning fire,
a beacon to follow that will never ever tire,
A lamp to guide us in the darkest night,
and show us the path that leads to light.


This one goes to the tune ‘All things bright and beautiful’

Bless this sacred moment
with your greatest gift of love,
Bring us ever closer
to the joy of heaven above.

All future growth and flowering
are rooted in our past:
two lives entwined together
in promises that last.

Lord, make us more forgiving
to those who do us wrong,
give patience and endurance
and peace our whole life long.

The care of those around us,
our families and friends,
uphold us and inspire us
to love that never ends.

A ring to seal the promise,
A kiss to touch the heart,
A prayer to know the blessing
that you alone impart.