PILAR: I’m on a mission to bring truth and light to the masses. So I started a new side gig I’m labeling ShadowLeaks™. And people, I have some really important news leaks for you about the new LDS hymn and song books. The absolute truth (and nothing but the truth) is that I have “acquired” certain secret sacred memos from Church Headquarters describing exactly what’s in and what’s out, plus every scandelicious detail about the new hymn book.
First, as was announced by the Church, the hymns were to be chosen from a selection of submissions by the General Authorities and Apostles of the Church, as well as the general membership. Sacred Memo #6, dated June 6, confirms most Apostles submitted, and had approved for inclusion, at least one hymn, with the exception of President Henry B. Eyring who did not submit a hymn. Instead, he asked that an extra musical line be added to each hymn “so that members can have a few measures to compose themselves (wipe away tears) between verses.” This request was rejected by the General Music Committee.
Here are some highlights about hymns from the upper leadership that you’ll soon see in the hymnbook:
- President Russell M. Nelson has rewritten two hymns (“Let us All Share Kind Posts on the Facebooks” and “Did You Think to Pay?”) to reflect our changing times. (Sacred Memo #1)
- D. Todd Christofferson offered up “Who’s on the Gays’ Side?” (Sacred Memo #7)
- Jeffrey R. Holland’s new hymn, “Should You Feel Inclined to Quit, You Taffy Pullers,” is in. (Sacred Memo #4)
- President Dallin H. Oaks’ composition “Sweet is the Peace Kirton-McKonkie Brings” received a unanimous vote. (Sacred Memo # 1)
- M. Russell Ballard penned a lovely song titled, “A Woman’s Voice.” The entire hymn is two verses, one line each: “1. Beautiful women, noble, valued. 2. Use your lovely voice subdued.” It’s marked to sing “Reverently, Quietly” with several of Eyring’s requested extra lines of music. (Sacred Memo #13)
- David A. Bednar contributed an astoundingly impressive 100 new verses to the children’s song “Quickly, I’ll Obey.” For brevity’s sake, “only 99 of the most inspiring could be included.” (Sacred Memos #8-10, 46-58, 66-78, 105-141, 158-195)
- Dieter F. Uchtdorf penned the new hymn, “I Saw the Mighty Airplane Fly,” arranged for SATB voices and to be sung in “Blissful Harmony.” It was rejected. However, the Committee acquiesced to leaving two of Elder Uchtdorf’s favorite songs, “Jesus, Savior, Pilot Me” and “How Long, O Lord Most Holy and True,” both of which had been slated for removal. (Sacred Memos #14 & 17)
- Quentin L. Cook suggested deleting “Jesus, Lover of My Soul” and “The Iron Rod,” citing a desire to “reduce confusion and dis-orientation.” Motion sustained by the Committee. (Sacred Memo #69)
- Gary E. Stephenson contributed “Nay, Tweet No Ill.” (Sacred Memo #5)
- Neil L. Anderson submitted and received approval for “Let Zion in Her Modest Garb, Lengthen All Her Hemlines.” (Sacred Memo #22)
- Gerrit W. Gong contributed a women’s arrangement of Hymn #224 “I Have Work Enough To Do.” It was rejected by the Committee. (Sacred Memo #25)
- (In no particular order) Sisters Eubank, Craven, Cordon, Craig, Bingham, Jones, Franco, and Harkness decided to heed Sister Aburto’s advice to be unified, and together submitted a new arrangement of “As Sisters in Zion” with the harmony line removed. The mood is to be changed to “Sweetly Saccharine,” and the music has been transposed up several keys. (Sacred Memo #11)
Twenty thousand new submissions for music were submitted by members to the General Music Committee. The two selected are “Be Thou Privileged” by Kaylub Teancum Goode and “A Sly Ascending Man of Prey” by Ayebraeham Jaymes Kimball, both Idaho residents. (Sacred Memos #79 & 152)
Also of note, former U.S. Senator, Brother Harry Reid, requested that the hymn “God of Power, God of Right” be changed to “God of Power, God of Left.” The Committee voted to leave it as is. (Sacred Memo #19)
Obviously, I can’t list all the 19,998 submitted Hymns mentioned in the Sacred Memos that were rejected, but here are a few of my personal favorites: “Lord, Accept Our Middling Fervor,” “Bless Our Nosh, O Lord, We Pray,” “As Zion’s Gays in Latter Days,” and “Like Ten Thousand Lesbians Marching.”
Perhaps the most entertaining group of Sacred Memos that ShadowLeaks™ discovered were the somewhat vexed and very confused exchanges between Oaks, Holland, and Rasband over the long list of “strangely altered” hymns submitted by a group calling itself “The Silver Fox Fan Club.” On the list of songs were: “Lean on My Rugged Arm,” “With all the Power of Heart and Tongue,” “Come, Come, Ye Saints,” “Lead Me into Love Eternal,” “Glorious Things of Him are Spoken,” “O Thou Rock of Our Temptation,” “I Need Him Every Hour,” and “God Loved Us, So He Sent a Fox.” (Over 350 Sacred Memos, citations omitted for length.)
And lastly, the Correlation Committee suggested getting rid of “Oh Say, What Is Truth?” and “If You Could Hie to Kolob.” Motion sustained. (Sacred Memo #255)
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