|First Line:||In Christ there is no east or west (Perry)|
|Title:||In Christ There Is No East or West|
|Author:||Michael A. Perry (1982)|
|Source:||John Oxenham, 1905, after a line by; The Book of Common Prayer|
st. 1 = Isa. 49:12, Luke 13:29, Acts 17:26, Col. 3:11, Gal. 3:28
st. 2 = 2 Cor. 5:18-19
Many hymnals contain William A. Dunkerley's "In Christ There Is No East or West," a hymn text written in 1908 by Dunkerley under the pseudonym of John Oxenham. However, it is ironic that this text about the worldwide church has been considered by many in the twentieth century to have an exclusively male emphasis. Consequently, various recent hymnal editors have altered the text. Michael A. Perry (PHH 299) concluded that the revision needed to be so radical that an entirely new text would be a better choice. Thus Perry kept only Dunkerley's opening line and wrote a new text on the same theme. Perry's text was published in Hymns for Today's Church in 1982.
Based on New Testament passages such as Galatians 3:28 and 1 John 4:7-12, this text describes certain ideal characteristics of the church: its comprehensiveness (st. 1), unity (st. 2, 5), love (st. 3), and holiness (st. 4), ideals for which we must continually work and pray. Perry says of his text, "The spirit of reconciliation was invoked from the Pauline Epistles, and the spirit of fellowship from the Johanine."
For Worldwide Communion, All Nations Sunday, All Saints Day, and other church festivals such as Pentecost; splendid for ecumenical services.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook