Music Notes for Trinity 15

by Bryan Anderson This week I thought I’d share some background on one of the ubiquitous parts of our services, the singing of the Old Hundredth doxology, “Praise God from whom all blessings flow,” etc. Sometimes people in the Episcopal tradition are surprised to realize that there is no Prayer Book rubric for a doxology after the offertory! It is a tradition that came to exist in very many disparate Protestant churches, and the words are probably the single best known lines of post-Scriptural Christian poetry in the world. Bishop Thomas Ken wrote these words as the last verse of his morning and evening hymns: the morning hymn appears in our Hymnal 1940 at #151-152, and the evening hymn at #165. You will see the doxology appearing at the end of both of these, as well as standing alone at #139, and incorporated in an Isaac Watts text at #277. The word “ubiquitous” again comes to mind! Julia and I lived for a short while just a few minutes’ walk from Thomas Ken’s former episcopal residence, which still includes the…