The triumph song of Heav’n

Last week, the church that has provided me with much of my gainful employment for the past decade, The Presbyterian Church in Sudbury, celebrated its 50th anniversary, so I wrote an anthem for the occasion. Score below, where also, behind some ambient Presbyterian noise, you can hear the premiere (thanks to Doug Nicholls for the recording).

We Love the Place (2011), SATB chorus and organ (PDF, 170Kb)

The words are by William Bullock, Anglican missionary to Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. Numerous versions of Bullock’s poem were already floating around by the end of the 19th century; I mixed and matched stanzas I liked. Supposedly, when asked why there wasn’t a stanza of “We Love the Place” devoted to the church’s pulpit, Bullock replied that he would have been compelled to write:

We love thy pulpit Lord,
For there the word of man
Lulls the worshiper to sleep
As only sermons can.


  1. Alex: Oh, no, sorry, I misunderstood. That is a typo! There should be no word there for the basses. I gave them a bar off to breathe and get their bearings for the offbeat entrance.

    Excellent copyediting! I'll get a corrected copy up later today.


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