Singing the Faith Plus

Singing the Faith Plus (http://www.singingthefaithplus.org.uk/) is the web-based resource designed to complement and support the new hymn book of the Methodist Church, Singing the Faith. It was established in order to provide a platform for new hymns, songs and contemporary worship resources as well as offering a single point of access for information on Methodists hymns and worship.

Designed for musicians and leaders of worship, Singing the Faith Plus (StF+) includes unique search and index facilities, together with suggestions and articles to assist in choosing the right hymns and songs for local needs. It is also a place to share new hymns and songs, words and opinions, and to explore new materials for Methodist worship.

Answering your questions

Already, StF+ is evolving as more people use the site and write in with specific notes and queries. We’ve added a new menu section, “About StF” (http://www.singingthefaithplus.org.uk/?page_id=293), with pages devoted to the hymn book itself, other editions and “Frequently asked questions”. We’ve also created a central space for leaving your questions and comments.

Other editions

At the moment, the most frequently asked questions have to do with other versions of the hymn book – especially organ, electronic words, and backing track versions. These and other options continue to be discussed by the newly formed Singing the Faith Reference Group, which will guide the development of the book, website and all things related. At the moment, the latest news is this:

The Electronic Words Edition is now available and further information about this is on the “Other editions” page of the website (http://www.singingthefaithplus.org.uk/?page_id=4917).

We’ve also heard that Hymnal Plus has produced an upgrade to accommodate all the content of Singing the Faith. This features backing tracks of all 826 accompanied music items in the book. For further information, please go to the Hymnal Plus site (http://www.hymntechnology.com/).  We are happy to bring this product to your attention but, as it has been produced independently, we have not tested it thoroughly and cannot guarantee its accuracy or quality.

News of all further developments will be posted on the website as soon as they happen.

Lectionary suggestions

Already, the “Hymns for Sunday worship” calendar on StF+ is being well used. Here you can find suggestions for which hymns you might use to accompany the readings of the Lectionary. We are working three months ahead – which means you can already start planning for Ash Wednesday if you feel like it!

We would be very interested to hear which hymns you actually use for Sunday worship – or at any other time. I was recently told of a “groundbreaking ceremony” for a new church development at which the gathering sang (outdoors – of course – with a guitar) “Ye servants of God” (StF 340) and Peter Relf’s recent hymn, “In this place, with God’s word” (StF 554).

You can let us know what you used (and what worked and what didn’t) by posting your choices underneath our own Lectionary suggestions. And don’t forget the Biblical Index – another resource to help you choose appropriate hymns.

An online hymn companion?

StF+ has begun to compile background notes and ideas for singing to accompany each hymn entry on the site. There’s a long way to go but, in the run-up to Christmas, we posted information about Singing the Faith’s three new Advent candle hymns (StF 165, 166 & 174), as well as Marjorie Dobson’s “Jesus the carpenter” (StF 275), Geoffrey Ainger’s “Born in the night” (StF 193) and Bernadette Farrell’s popular “Longing for light” (StF 706).

Do take time to explore Singing the Faith Plus and let us know what you think. You can get in touch with me by emailing stfplus@methodistchurch.org.uk, using the feedback page of the website, or posting your thoughts to “Editor, Singing the Faith Plus” at Methodist Church House, 25 Marylebone Road, London NW1 5JR.


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