The tempo may vary, depending on the mood you are trying to create. A light, quick pace suits the anticipatory waiting of Christmas Eve or the Easter Vigil, while a slower one fits the meditative aura of a prayer before the reading of Scripture, a response during Evening or Night Prayer. Whether fast or slow, let the line of the melody flow without sagging at the commas in the text. Resist the temptation to slow down at the end of the fourth measure, especially if you use the song as a refrain. A few voices or a soloist may begin with “Come Light, Light of God” with everyone joining in at “o’erwhelm” or entering one by one until the end. Since this comes from a convent, try the original voicing by having choir women sing in three parts—the first line with the tenor up an octave, the second line with the tenor as written.
Come, Light, Light of God
In trying to track down the composer of this song that came from the Community of Grandchamp, a Swiss Convent, I wrote a friend who lived at the time in Germany near the Swiss border and learned that she lived within walking distance of the convent! She offered to visit the Community so I could learn not only the composer’s name, but also obtain contact information so I could seek permission to include this song in Sing! A New Creation (2001), which I was editing at the time. I called and met Sister Heidi over the phone, and we had a mutually delightful conversation. She graciously gave permission to use it as I had edited it in four parts from her three-part setting for women’s voices that had been included in Thuma mina, an international ecumenical hymnbook published in Basil and Munich in 1995.
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