Tapestry of Faith: Exploring Our Values Through Poetry: A Program for High School Youth

Alternate Activity 1: The Themes of Hymns

Activity time: 20 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Copies of Singing the Living Tradition and Singing the Journey
  • Journals and pens/pencils

Description of Activity

Participants search for hymns that have themes of freedom, hope, or the difficulties of life.

Distribute hymnals. Ask participants to search for hymns that reflect the themes you discussed in today's workshop (freedom, death, hope, and-if you used Alternate Activity 1-courage). Some examples from Singing the Living Tradition include Hymn 4, "I Brought My Spirit to the Sea" (renewal of spirit); Hymn 6, "Just As Long As I Have Breath"; Hymn 112, "Do You Hear?"; Hymn 159, "This Is My Song"; and Hymn 346, "Come, Sing a Song with Me."

Invite volunteers to read the lyrics aloud. Discuss how the hymns relate to the themes and their tone and mood. Suggest to participants that singing a favorite hymn can be a tactic for remaining hopeful during hard times. If participants find a hymn they like in particular, invite them to copy the words into their journals so they can practice singing it.