Psalm 22, 1 March 2015

Feeling forsaken
Feeling forsaken

What was Psalm 22 thinking? Here it is popping up well before Good Friday where, as happened last year, it seems permanently consigned by virtue of Jesus’ quoting it on the cross:

‘Why have you forsaken me?’

Ah, I see. We draw this week on verses 23 to 31 (click here for lectionary readings), a selection which has enough hair-shirt to qualify for Lent but does not include the ‘why hast thou forsaken me?’ lament from verse 1. It just shows how we can remember one good line in a passage and forget the rest.

In this selection there is much more, and more positive stuff — spirited reverence for divine sway over the creation and all nations, yet at the same time a call to praise, not only for this understanding but also that this is the same God who:

… did not despise the suffering of the afflicted one (or the poverty of the poor); nor turn away from me, but heard when I cried (v. 24)

This is part of the answer to that lament question when feeling forsaken.


For this reason, and to look forward to Good Friday during Lent, we include in the incidental music a setting by John Blow (1648 – 1708) which begins ‘My God, look upon me, why …?’ from verse 1.

However, the full reading for the week is encapsulated in sung verses and a refrain from Psalms for all seasons 22D (the alternate refrain and tone). This one does not use verse 1 and the famous forsaken feeling. Instead, in response to the comfort expressed in verse 24 above, we sing:

All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord. (v. 27)

Music by Hildegard written in neumes.

Hildegard and Women’s Day

Women and girls are also invited to join preparations for International Women’s Day in March.

Amongst other dimensions to this important observance on 8 March under Gwenda’s guidance, they will sing extracts from O frondens virga by Hildegard of Bingen.

Historically informed, constantly relevant.
The psalms: historically informed, constantly relevant.

We are thrilled to welcome back to our company a cherished friend with her authentic hurdy-gurdy.

The feather will fly once more.

3 thoughts on “Psalm 22, 1 March 2015

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