Top 6 on My Hymn Black List: please don’t let it shine

One of my major guilty pleasures is my disdain for mediocre church music. I had the great satisfaction of making a black list for our parish last week and came across some positively awful pieces that are too delicious to keep to myself, and some that I have had on my black list for years.

Here are the best (or worst) ones:
The King of Glory
After Stephen Colbert’s rendition, I can’t imagine anyone taking this seriously anymore. I challenge anyone under 40 not to think of Stephen Colbert’s rendition when they hear it.  Not being all that great to begin with, I think it is safe to say that the song is ruined forever by his performance.
Walk in the Reign
I confess, I have never heard this song. The title alone is enough to earn my scorn. Offertory doesn’t seem to be the time for cheesy puns.
On Eagle’s Wings
It’s the yoo-hoo song! I actually don’t mind the sound of this. But after playing it at almost every funeral (just today actually), I don’t want to think about it on Sundays. The worst thing I can actually say about it is that its overly sentimental. I still don’t play it unless I have to.
One Bread, One Body
I used to play this quite a lot. Then my brother introduced me to the wedding version. “One bed, two bodies…” I can’t ever play it again. If a bride ever requests this piece for her wedding, I might lose it.
Shake up the Morning
“Shake up the morning, let the sun undress/ let the dew re-glisten natures loveliness” the song begins. Uhm… wut? Hopefully you don’t know this song either, I had never heard it, so here: The song starts at 00:50.
Ignoring the blatant heresy in the second and third verses, I can’t believe this piece made it into a Catholic hymnal. That opening imagery certainly invites a little pearl clutching.
And the top tune on my black list is….
This Little Light of Mine
Ah, the infamous ukulele incident. I had the misfortune of being in the second pew at this event and had a very difficult time containing my laughter. At the most conservative parish in the diocese, the bishop pulled out a ukulele during the confirmation homily, nearly causing a riot if it hadn’t been for the organist. The online discussion after the fact was a sight to see.
 Its a great piece for VBS, but at an adult Mass, it is ridiculous at best, scandalous at worst. I might be wrong, but I don’t think this is the kind of child-like faith we are required to have.
Fun fact, when I began my current gig, this was the only song I was requested not to play.
 After all that ridiculousness, let me leave you with something nice. Here’s a rendition of All Creatures of Our God and King on a good ol’ pipe organ.

Keep on shinin’.


september 9, 2019 - 2-00 pm - findlay residence (2)

Edit 8-15-17: In the first verse of “One Bread, One Body,” it sounds like we are assimilated a la the Borg Collective when we become Christian. I always thought we actually found our identity in Christ, not that we lost it.


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