Featured Hymn for August 14: When Morning Gilds the Skies

Several of the Psalms begin and end with fervent declarations of praise, such as this: “Praise the Lord! Praise, O servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord! … Praise the Lord!” (Psalm 113:1, 9b ESV). Likewise, from the opening lines of early morning praise to the final couplet about eternal praise before the throne of God in heaven, this hymn has the constant refrain, “May Jesus Christ be praised.”

This hymn of praise may be sung at any time of year, and is often associated with early morning praise. The exultation expressed in the text may be served well by the use of handbells. A moderately easy arrangement of “When Morning Gilds the Skies” for handbell choir alone has simple rhythms and a few modulations. Another setting of “When Morning Gilds the Skies” is for choir and organ, with optional handbells and congregational participation. The third stanza is choir alone, and the final stanza has a descant. If just the organ is used, a vigorous accompaniment such as in “Dynamic Hymn Introductions” would stimulate the congregational singing.

View worship notes, composer biographies, historical information and more about this featured hymn at www.hymnary.org.