For the Healing of the Nations

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Scripture References

Further Reflections on Scripture References

Many Scripture references point us to the concern for justice as a strong element in the kingdom of God. Similarly, the call to work for justice and to overcome injustice is a common cry.  For many of the following songs, see such passages as Deuteronomy 27:6, Psalm 9:9, 10:18,  64:1-6, 72:1-4, 119:134, 137:1-9, Proverbs 21:3, Isaiah 1:17,  Micah 6:6-8, Amos 5:15, Acts 10:34-38,  Colossians 4:1 and James 1:27.

Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Further Reflections on Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Any song or testimony about the cries that comes from our nations and cities must be met with confessional statements about the mission of the church as listed here.
Our World Belongs to God, paragraphs 41-43 are explicit and pointed about the mission of the church: “In a world estranged from God, where happiness and peace are offered in many names and millions face confusing choices, we witness—with respect for followers of other ways—to the only one in whose name salvation is found: Jesus Christ.”
Later, Our World Belongs to God, paragraphs 52-54 point to the task of the church in seeking public justice and functioning as a peacemaker: “We call on our governments to work for peace and to restore just relationships. We deplore the spread of weapons in our world and on our streets with the risks they bring and the horrors they threaten…”
The Belhar Confession, section 3 calls the church to be a peacemaker, and section 4 calls the church “to bring about justice and true peace.”
Our Song of Hope, stanza 10 calls the church to seek “the welfare of the people” and to work “against inhuman oppression of humanity.”

For the Healing of the Nations

Tune Information

g minor

For the Healing of the Nations

Author Information

Baptized in the historic St. Bavo Church in Haarlem, Fred Kaan (b. Haaarlem, Netherlands, July 27, 1929; d. Penrith, Cumbria, England, October 4, 2009) began his theological education at the University of Utrecht but moved to England in 1952 and completed his studies at Bristol University. Ordained by the (now) United Reformed Church in 1955, he served the Windsor Road Congregational Church in Barry, Wales (1955-­1963), and the Pilgrim Church, Plymouth, England (1963-1968). From 1968 to 1978 he was initially minister-secretary of the International Congregational Council in Geneva, Switzerland, and then executive secretary of the World Alliance of Reformed Church. He returned to England in 1978 to become the moderator of the Western Midlands Province of the United Reformed Church, after which he served the Central Church in Swindon and the Penhill United Reformed Church (1985-1989). As an ecumenist Kaan has associations with Christian communities and social action groups throughout the world. He began to write hymns because he wanted to "fill the gaps" not covered by traditional hymnals especially in the area of the social responsibility demanded by the gospel. Considered one of the important contributors to the recent "explosion" in English hymn writing, Kaan has written some two hundred hymns and translations. His hymns were collected in Pilgrim Praise (1968, 1972), Break Not the Circle (1975), The Hymn Texts of Fred Kaan (1985), and Planting Trees and Sowing Seeds (1989), as well as in most recent hymnals. Kaan's 1984 doctoral dissertation (Geneva Theological College) is called "Emerging Language in Hymnody."
— Bert Polman

Composer Information

Swee Hong Lim (b. 1963) is the Deer Park Assistant Professor of Sacred Music at Emmanuel College of Victoria University in the University of Toronto, Canada, and directs the Master of Sacred Music program. Prior to this, he taught at Baylor University, Waco, TX and Trinity Theological College in Singapore. He earned degrees from Asian Institute for Liturgy and Music, Manila; Southern Methodist University, Texas; and Drew University, New Jersey. He has contributed essays to Oxford Handbook on Christianity in Asia (Oxford, 2013), Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology (Canterbury, 2013), and New Songs of Celebration Render (GIA Publications, Inc., 2013).  His hymn tunes are found in many North American hymnals.
— Swee Hong Lim
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