520. Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth,
and of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only begotten Son of God,
begotten of the Father before all worlds;
God of God, Light of Light,
very God of very God;
begotten, not made,
being of one substance with the Father,
by whom all things were made.
Who, for us and our salvation,
came down from heaven,
and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary,
and was made man;
and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered and was buried;
and the third day he rose again,
according to the Scriptures;
and ascended into heaven,
and is seated at the right hand of the Father;
and he shall come again, with glory,
to judge both the living and dead;
whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of life;
who proceeds from the Father and the Son;
who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and
who spoke by the prophets.
And I believe one holy catholic, apostolic church.
I acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins;
and I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.

Text Information
First Line: I believe in one God, the Father almighty
Title: Nicene Creed
Meter: PM
Language: English
Publication Date: 1987
Topic: Biblical Names & Places: Mary; Biblical Names & Places: Pontius Pilate; Creeds (5 more...)
Source: Nicene Creed, 4th cent.
Tune Information
Composer: Herbert G. Draesel, Jr. (1964)
Arranger: Verlyn Schultz (1985)
Meter: PM
Key: G Major
Copyright: Tune © 1964, Edward B. Marks Music Corp. International copyright secured. All rights reserved. Used by permission

Text Information:

Scripture References:
st. = Gen. 1:1, John 1:14, Matt. 1:20-21, Mark 15-16, Luke 24:51, Eph.1:20, John 14:16-17, 1 Cor. 12:4-7, 12-13, Rom. 6:4, 1 Cor. 15:21

While the familiar Apostles' Creed is associated with baptism (see 518 and 519), the Nicene Creed is associated particularly with the Lord's Supper and is professed weekly throughout the world by many churches, including Roman Catholic, Episcopal, and Lutheran congregations. See also page 842 for a discussion of this ecumenical creed; the text is found in the Psalter Hymnal (p. 814) with a brief historical footnote (note that the hymn text differs from the modern translation of the creed in a few phrases).

Liturgical Use:
See PHH 518.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

Because the Latin text is the Credo (Latin for "I believe"), one part of the Ordinary of the Roman Catholic Mass, the Nicene Creed has been set to music with Latin texts by numerous composers over the centuries. But one of the changes introduced by Vatican II, a major Roman Catholic council during the 1960s was to encourage worship in vernacular languages, creating a need for new settings.

Many Roman Catholic churches began to replace the historic Latin Mass settings with hymnody and choral music influenced by the commercial "folk style." Geoffrey Beaumont, a founder of the "20th Century Church Light Music Group," initiated this trend in England when he composed his 20th Century Folk Mass in 1956. Musicians throughout the world in both Roman Catholic and Protestant communities soon followed his example, including Herbert G. Draesel, Jr. (b. Jersey City, N.J, 1940), who composed this setting.

Draesel's setting is from his folk mass Rejoice (1964), which enjoyed popularity for some time in youth services. Draesel studied at Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, and in 1964 received a divinity degree from General Theological Seminary in New York City. He was a curate and rector of the House of Prayer in Newark, New Jersey, and since 1975 has been rector of Grace Church, White Plains, New York.

The melody uses several chantlike melodic patterns, which are repeated and varied to carry the text. The tune also includes syncopations, a trademark of this musical style, If led by a choir, congregations should be able to learn this setting. Note that two metronome markings are given; the middle section should be sung more slowly. Some may prefer to use this creedal song primarily as a profession of faith sung by a youth choir accompanied with guitars (its original style).

Verlyn Schultz (b. Edgerton, MN, 1932) prepared the keyboard setting in 1985. A church organist, Schultz was a member and secretary of the Psalter Hymnal Revision Committee. He taught music at the Christian school in Fremont, Michigan, from 1959 to 1980, and since 1982 has been employed at the Christian Music Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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