Abide With Me: The Stories and Sites of the Great British Hymns   -     By: Dr. John Parker, Paul Seawright
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Abide With Me: The Stories and Sites of the Great British Hymns

New Leaf Press / 2009 / Hardcover

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Product Description

Combining internationally acclaimed Paul Seawright's breathtaking photographs and John Parker's descriptive text, Abide with Me is a gorgeous collection of images from the sites, sounds, and history that gave birth to some of Christianity's most poignant and revered hymns. You are familiar with these songs, but do you know:
  • The hymn specially written for a sister's wedding in 30 minutes
  • The privileged poet and hymnist who would die ministering in India
  • The first British hymn ever written and its original language
  • The song of comfort written by the daughter of a newspaper editor; a song associated with the funerals of three American presidents
In the past 300 years, no other collection of poetry and music has been voiced or loved as consistently as have British hymns. Every week during those centuries, worshippers in churches throughout Britian, Europe, and America have read and sung such verses as "Rock of Ages" and "Abide with Me." Whether celebrations of joy or in times of sadness, these hymns have become staples of our culture, and this book will become a classic family favorite as well.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 96
Vendor: New Leaf Press
Publication Date: 2009
Dimensions: 10.00 X 10.00 (inches)
ISBN: 0892216905
ISBN-13: 9780892216901
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Vividly portrays the inspiration and history of twenty-five of the most popular hymns

Highlights the faithful work of twenty composers, like John Newton, Henry Lyte, and Sarah Flowers Adams

Includes a free 24-song CD featuring beloved hymns, performed by Ray Walker of the Jordanaires and other artists.

These beloved British hymns -- and the others whose stories are presented in this stunning collection -- are the songs that have inspired and comforted worshippers for over three hundred years. The sites where they were composed--brilliantly captured by internationally-acclaimed Irish photographer Paul Seawright and described by American writer and literary scholar John Parker -- are presented here, many for the first time. You will be able to see and experience the settings that produced the Church's most magnificent hymns.

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  1. North Platte, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 13, 2009
    Janna Ryan
    North Platte, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    I have seen very few books that stack up to "Abide with Me" as far as depth and beauty goes. It is of the most superb quality for gift giving and should not just be relegated to the coffee table for its breath-taking photos, but needs to be in a place of prominence where you will pick it up often and read about the amazing places that were the inspiration for many of our most loved hymns.I think that knowing the reason why a particular hymn was written in the first place makes the lyrics that much more poignant to our own souls as we sing them. "Abide With Me" is the perfect blend of explaining the lives of the authors and the stories of the hymns with the sheer beauty of the places they were surrounded with as they wrote and lived.Not only is the book amazing, but it includes a cd filled with the beautiful hymns that are discussed in the book. There are a variety of different choirs and groups that sing them which is actually quite nice because it means that they don't all sound the same and makes for a lot of enjoyment in the listening.All in all, if you or someone you know loves singing the good ol' hymns then you will want to add this excellent book to your collection.
  2. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 11, 2009
    Lisa
    This is a special book. The photography alone is breathtaking. If you're a lover of the old British Hymns you can't go wrong with this treasure. And if you're like me, you want to read the stories behind events. Who doesn't love to read John Newton's story and how he came to write Amazing Grace? The song takes on a whole new meaning. In this book there was quiet a few stories, biographies to songs I wasn't familiar with. But old ones like, "Take My Life and Let It Be," "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing," "Rock of Ages." are among the list of compiled songs. Along with the stories are vivid, beautiful photographs of churches in England, where some of the most beloved hymns sung today were born. It's likely that this book is the only place you'll ever see them so vividly. The century old pews and the pulpits, the stained desks, the cemeteries I've always wanted to tour. The scenery and the gardens truly surreal... I give my compliments to the dedicated research for the song-stories, but the book wouldn't be the same without the photography; it compliments the book so richly. This collection of stories and photos are the compilation of three years old labor. I'd say it was worth it. Lastly, the authors have included a CD with 24 hymns and praise songs!! There wasn't anything I didn't like about this book. Highly recommended.
  3. Tampa, FL
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 10, 2009
    Sally
    Tampa, FL
    Show and Tell comes alive in this historical book about twenty-five of Britain's--and indeed, America's--most popular hymns. It's beautifully laid out and illustrated with spectacularly colored photographs on every page. Why, even the Table of Contents contains colored photographs! Descriptions read as if an informed tour guide leads the reader through the towns, fields, and churches, pointing out many details of interest, making this a book chock full of valuable information.A high quality, a cappella CD of twenty-four of the twenty-five hymns is included. I was excited to hear Caedmon's Hymn, the first known English language hymn in its original language as well as in translation. Note: early English requires translation! When I taught high school, students were often amazed to learn this fact.Truly, it is the next best thing to being there. This volume would make an amazing gift for anyone who has an interest in Britain, music, history, photography, or the things of God. What a treasure!
  4. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 8, 2009
    Christy Lockstein
    Abide with Me by John H. Parker is a terrific hardcover book filled with beautiful photos and fascinating stories behind some of our favorite hymns. Parker travels across the United Kingdom from the hills of Wales to the busy collegiate town of Cambridge to the imposing landscape of Yorkshire to discover the story behind some of England's most famous hymns and their creators. From Isaac Watt's Joy to the World to Sabine Baring-Gould's Onward Christian Soldiers, each of these songs has stood the test of time and speaks to something within the Christian experience. The photographs are stunning in their depiction of this breath-taking land, and Parker brings a real flavor of a traveler to each chapter, describing the homes and churches of hymnists long gone. He brings to life each writer with a few deft strokes of the pen, and the photography displays the beauty of God's creation that they looked upon while writing words that are sung in churches around the world every Sunday. A CD is included that has version of each song, some of the tunes I was unfamiliar with, like Take My Life (one of my all-time favorite hymns) and Oh Happy Day. This lovely book would be a perfect gift for the holidays!
  5. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 8, 2009
    MJ
    This is a fabulous book! I could easily see this sitting out on a coffee table for years to come or a guest room bedside table for enjoyment. Also, this book is a perfect gift idea for my father. Written by John H. Parker and filled to the brim of photography by Paul Seawright, this square-shaped book is a perfect historical lesson on Christianity's most famous British Hymns and their authors lives. Each chapter gives an oral history of the hymnist life and a photographic journey of those locations in modern day. Each picture and page is to die for.Over the years my father has always been interested in the history of hymns and their authors and collected various books on the topic. This one is like no other that he has in his collection. The pictures open a different kind of view into the lives and homes of these historical figures, both male and female and really brings a relaxation to the experience. In addition to flipping through these glorious pictures and learning of the lyrical poetry written by such masters this book also contains a free CD with 24 songs of beloved hymns, performed by Ray Walker of the Jordanaires and other artists all arranged to sound as they would have in the time they were written.This book and CD is quite the experience, and I cannot wait to share it with my dad. But I think he'll have to wait until I get him another copy, because I do not want to give mine up!
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