For most people, one of the most easiest and natural ways of conveying ourselves is to sing. It is accordinglymost natural that when anyone worships what they have faith in, that they sing whilst doing so. The very act of singing during prayeroccurs in every religion in the world, although a hymn, by definition, is normally considered as an aspect of the Christian religion, even though some other faiths have their own form of hymns.
You can basically describe a prayer as a praise to the Lord, applied to choral music and sung by a congregation at a place of worship. And via this method, the hymn was really a prototype for much of Western music, where popular music has verses and a chorus, and is sung with a marked melody line by Believers Love World. This is directly from the hymn form, even though not all hymns have choruses.
In the Beginning Were Prayers and Psalms
As Christianity became more established, monks and nuns chantednumerous prayers at certain times of the day. The whole Mass service was mostly chanted, and chant, means:
- Singing a particular number of words on the very same note
- The tone rising or falling at the end of the line
- Is very difficult and not easy at all to perform
- To perfect it takes a lot of practice
And so, chanting was very challenging for any member of an average congregation to fully master and embrace.
About the time of the Protestant Reformation, people had enough of the chant, which was then sung completely in Latin, the language of the Church. Christians were wishing to sing in their native tongue, or “in the vernacular.” As the Protestant Church spread, enlightened composers arrived onto the scene such as Johann Sebastian Bach, who skilfully composed wondrous choral music, meant to be sung by Christian worshippers. After not too long, this church music finally got over to the congregations who would sing a lot of such songs in their service.
The Father of Hymns
A certain Mr Isaac Watts is now looked at as the “Father of English Hymnody” and is credited with the writing of no less than 700 hymns! His works in the late 17th and early 18th centuries moved the hymn to a renowned place of reverence and awe in the church. He penned the words to the world famousChristmas carol “Joy to the World,” and others such as “O God Our Help in Ages Past” and “Jesus Shall Reign Where’re the Sun,” which are now thought of as the great classic hymns of the Christian church and are found in nearly all traditional hymn books.
Hymns havecertainly altered over the past century or so, which reflect more of the melodies of secular music. There are some Christians who have welcomed the new hymn form, whilst others prefer the classic forms.
And, it is a fact that both have something to offer and teach a worshipper, or a student of sacred music.