Lift Your Voice and Sing
All across our country yesterday and today, there are celebrations like we have never seen before. For the first time since 1865, the country is recognizing and honoring a day known as Juneteenth, commemorating June 19, 1865, the date on which enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, finally received the news they were free. This was two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, one year after the Senate passed the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery, on April 18, 1864, and six months after it was passed by the House on January 31, 1865.
We are making strides in our struggle to combat racism in our country, but we still have a long way to go. This beautiful hymn touches my heart everytime I hear it sung. It is endowed with a deep history of black pride, but also speaks to the universal human condition.
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us,
Facing the rising sun of our new day begun
Let us march on till victory is won.
The zulu word Ubuntu means "I am because you are," and until you are fully you, I am not fully me. The freedom of each of us is essential to the freedom of all.
And so I join my voice with these gorgeous voices and sing:
God of our weary years God of our silent tears Thou who has brought us thus far on the way Thou who has by Thy might Led us into the light Keep us forever in the path, we pray.
Lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee Lest, our hearts drunk with the wine of the world, we forget Thee Shadowed beneath Thy hand May we forever stand True to our God True to our native land Our native land.
I pray that our native land, the kingdom of heaven on earth, be filled with love that respects the dignity of every human being and peace that passes all understanding.
Please lift your voice and sing with me!