I read John's message to you about the hymnals and I have to make a few
corrections concerning the information he gave you. You probably will NOT
be able to find a hymnal in a library because they are usually very
denomination-specific. Before you buy, you should check with your church
to see which of the hymns we cover may or may not be included in the hymnal
your church uses. Many churches have updated their hymnals to include new
hymns and choruses - and in the process may exclude some of the older
hymns. If your church uses a fairly modern hymnal, you may check to see if
they have copies of the old version rambling around the church somewhere.
Once the new one is in use, copies of the old one often sit around because
no one knows what to do with them! Throwing away old hymnals seems very
sacreligious - but its not like you can really expect to sell them at a
rummage sale or something, so they usually get stacked in storerooms, etc.
You may even try calling around to some of the churches in your area to see
whether or not they have copies they would be happy to share, sell for a
modest amount or small donation, or even give away. I used both a new and
an old hymnal to write the hymns portion of the Renaissance/Reformation
unit. John got mixed up with the tip about the library because he saw me
doing research from library books on the historical origins of hymns.
Those books ARE in the library, but they are not in hymnal format and
usually do not give the musical portion/notes.
Buying a new hymnal (especially one that your church does not use) might be
very expensive. Unless your family is very musical and you would use it a
lot, you might have a hard time getting your money's worth out of it. See
if you can borrow one from your church instead. However, if you do find
most of the hymns I include in the hymnal at your church, it WOULD be a
good thing for your family to have. I have a friend who calls the church
office to find out which hymns will be sung on Sunday so that she can be
singing them and talking about them through the week with her children.
Then, on Sunday, the whole family is truly prepared for worship - they come
EXPECTING to worship and their hearts are ready. I think this is a GREAT
idea - and an excellent benefit to having a hymnal in your home.
If you have a hard time locating some of the hymns I include in your own
hymnal, just read them as poetry to your children and include the biblical
background I provide for each. I think there are 23 hymns referenced in
the unit - most of which I KNOW you will be able to find in any traditional
hymnal because they are so well-known. The other songs/hymns that are
included in the unit are from the Bible that you will just read. If you
have a creative family - try making up your own tunes for them, as well as
for the ones you can't find in your hymnal! Who knows what interesting new
melodies might spring forth from your home!!!!