Father, Help Your People

Father, help your people

Author: Fred Kaan (1966)
Published in 2 hymnals

Audio files: MIDI

Full Text

1 Father, help your people in this world to build
something of your kingdom and to do your will.
Lead us to discover partnership in love;
bless our ways of sharing, and our pride remove.

2 Lord of desk and altar, bind our lives in one,
that in work and worship love may set the tone.
Give us grace to listen, clarity of speech;
make us truly thankful for the gifts of each.

3 Holy is the setting of each room and yard,
lecture hall and kitchen, office, shop, and ward.
Holy is the rhythm of our working hours;
hallow then our purpose, energy, and powers.

4 Strengthen, Lord, for service, hand and heart and brain;
help us good relations daily to maintain.
Let the living presence of the Servant-Christ
heighten our devotion, make our lives a feast.

(This is the only full text available.)^ top

Author: Fred Kaan

Fred Kaan Hymn writer. His hymns include both original work and translations. He sought to address issues of peace and justice. He was born in Haarlem in the Netherlands in July 1929. He was baptised in St Bavo Cathedral but his family did not attend church regularly. He lived through the Nazi occupation, saw three of his grandparents die of starvation, and witnessed his parents deep involvement in the resistance movement. They took in a number of refugees. He became a pacifist and began attending church in his teens. Having become interested in British Congregationalism (later to become the United Reformed Church) through a friendship, he was attended Western College in Bristol. He was ordained in 1955 at the Windsor Road Congregation… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Father, help your people
Title: Father, Help Your People
Author: Fred Kaan (1966)
Meter: D
Language: English
Copyright: Text © 1972, Hope Publishing Co. All rights reserved. Used by permission


In the mid-1960s Fred Kaan (PHH 277) began writing hymn texts "to fill gaps" in traditional hymnody. He wrote this text in 1966 while he was pastor of the Pilgrim Church in Plymouth, England. It was published in his collection Pilgrim Praise (1968).

This "kingdom hymn" illustrates that Kaan was well versed in the Reformed understanding of the kingdom of God. "Father, Help Your People" is a prayer for the coming of God's kingdom wherever we are–in church, home, or marketplace–and with whatever gifts we have–in worship, work, or play. We are urged here to be Christ's servants in the world and thus to experience living as a feast, a foretaste of the great celebrations in the new heaven and earth.

Liturgical Use:
A "kingdom hymn" for many occasions of worship; fitting for special times of prayer for the nation, industry, science, and the arts; observances of schooling, graduations, business, and domestic life, and Labor Day.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook



Walter MacNutt (PHH 174) composed WHITWORTH in the mid-1960s when he was organist and choirmaster at St. Thomas Anglican Church in Toronto, Canada. Intended for an Epiphany processional, the tune was written for "Lo, the Pilgrim Magi." WHITWORTH was first published in the pamphlet Five Hymn Tunes (1…

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