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Why we’re publishing a new hymnal

If you didn’t know that we are publishing a new hymnal, well, we are. We’re first creating an online resource of free, downloadable hymns, but we’re working toward (and very close to completing!) a print hymnal as well.

Yesterday, Tim Challies blogged about “What We Lost When We Lost Our Hymnals.” Of course, just with that statement I know he’s not talking about me; some of us never lost our hymnals.

But his list is good:

  1. We lost an established body of songs
  2. We lost a deep knowledge of our songs.
  3. We lost the ability to do harmonies.
  4. We lost the ability to sing skilfully.
  5. We lost the ability to have the songs in our homes.

These are just a few of the reasons that we are producing a new hymnal.

At the same time, it’s mind boggling to me that along with recognizing the we lose a lot when we don’t use hymnals (or at least some form of printed hymns), Challies both begins and ends the post by saying, “I don’t think we should go back to using hymnals, and “It is probably too late to go back to the hymnal. I am not at all convinced we ought to.”

Scott Aniol

About Scott Aniol

Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry Department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He is the author of Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship, Sound Worship: A Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World, and By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and four children. Views posted here are his own and not necessarily those of his employer.

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