Abide With Me Hymn
How many verses do you know of this hymn? If you watch the FA Cup Final at Wembly you would be familiar with the first, and if you’re a church goer you’ll know a few more.
At the funeral of Mike Hurley we sang the full version. Eight verses. It was noticeable that the “gusto” disappeared from the singing in the congregation as we hit the unfamilair words:
Not a brief glance I beg, a passing word;
But as Thou dwell’st with Thy disciples, Lord,
Familiar, condescending, patient, free.
Come not to sojourn, but abide with me.
There followed three other little known and somewhat incomprehensible verses until the familiar words “I need thy presence, Every passing hour” restored volume to the voices.
I’ve been singing this hymn for as long as I can remember, but I’ve never waded through all eight verses before. But somehow, at Mike’s passing, it seemed appropriate. Tradition meant a lot to Mike.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.