Easter Special (April 5, 2015) - #4464 Music & the Spoken Word
Music & the Spoken Word broadcast with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square. April 4, 2015 Broadcast Number 4464.
“The Joyful Eastertide”
Lyrics: G. R. Woodward
Arrangement: Charles Wood
“Hallelujah Chorus,”1 from Christ on the Mount of Olives
Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
“The King of Love My Shepherd Is”
Lyrics: Henry Baker
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg
“Toccata on He Is Risen” (organ solo)
Composer: Clay Christiansen
“The Holy City”2
Composer: Stephen Adams
Lyrics: F. E. Weatherly
Soloist: Stanford Olsen
“Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise”
Composer: Robert Williams
Lyrics: Charles Wesley
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg
- On the album America’s Choir and in the CD sets 100 Years: Celebrating a Century of Recording Excellence and Anniversary Collection.
- On the album Glory! Music of Rejoicing.
“The Hope of This Season”
It's been said that God rewrites the book of Genesis every spring.1 "In the beginning" takes on special meaning each year as we witness the renewed life, the rebirth, and the new beginnings that seem to be built in to earth’s cycle of seasons. It’s as if nature itself is trying to tell us that whatever we are going through, things can change—things can get better. No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. The days will become a little brighter, the weather a little warmer, and life will be restored. Ultimately, it’s a reminder of the hope expressed by Robert Browning: "God’s in his heaven—all’s right with the world!"2?
We need that reassurance from time to time, especially in moments when life gets hard and all doesn't seem right with the world. When the fire of truth and faith has been extinguished, we need to know that it can be rekindled and burn again in our souls. When hearts have been broken and dreams shattered, we need to be reminded that they can be mended and rebuilt over time. Just as surely as brown grass, battered shrubs, and leafless trees can become green and blooming once again, we can believe in the promise of new life and renewed beginnings.
In that spirit, a poet once observed:
"I wonder if the Daffodil
Shrinks from the touch of frost,
And when her veins grow stiff and still
She dreams that life is lost?
Ah, if she does, how sweet a thing
Her resurrection day in spring!"3?
That is the hope of this season. It is the assurance that nothing is ever permanently lost, that no one is forever gone. Indeed, heartbreak, discouragement—even death itself is not final, as long as we have hope in that "resurrection day in spring." This is why we sing, "Hail the day that sees [us] rise"—from doubt to devotion, from fear to faith, from death to life!4
- See Austin O’Malley, Keystones of Thought, 5th ed.(1920), 91.
- Pippa Passes (1841), act 2, lines 215-22.
- Emma C. Dowd, “Daffodil and Crocus,” in Country Life in America, Apr. 1902, 218.
- Charles Wesley, “Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise” (1742).