PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE SEND YOUR TOP TEN LISTS TODAY! I really wanted to have at least one hundred responses, and so far I have heard from thirty SIXTY of you. Thanks to the Early Thirty! The rest of of you send in your lists! Deadline: May 31, 2009.

So, this past Sunday in church while listening attentively to the sermon, and even taking some notes in my Bible, I thought up a new project. I get some of my best thinking done during church. My excuse is that I can listen faster than my pastor can preach, so I have time left over to think. And I like projects. At least, I like thinking them up. Sometimes I’m a little bit lacking in the follow-through.

At any rate, inspired by Fuse #8’s Top 100 Picture Book Poll, which I enjoyed immensely and would recommend as a beginning reading list of picture books to accompany my Picture Book Preschool, I thought a Top 100 Hymns Poll would be a great summer project. I might learn something and be encouraged in my own worship. You might learn some new hymns or be reminded of some oldies. We all might enjoy visiting and re-visiting the hymns of the faith together.

Here’s how I think this poll/journey is going to work (I stole some of the rules from Fuse #8):

1. Make a list of your top ten hymns of all time.
Hymn (according to Webster): a song of praise to God
a metrical composition adapted for singing in a religious service.

For the purposes of this poll, I’m limiting the choices to Christian hymns, but the form of the song doesn’t matter. In other words, the songs on your list should be suitable for congregational singing and should be Christian. Handel’s Messiah is Christian but probably not suitable for congregational hymn singing. Anything you sing in worship service, even what are normally called choruses or gospel songs or spirituals or CCM, is fine. (Oh, English, please, or at least translated into English. Sorry, but it’s all I really speak.)

2. List these hymns in your order of preference. So your #1 hymn would be the one you feel is the best, and so on. I will be giving your first choice 10 points, your second choice 9 points, and so on.

3. Submit your list to me at sherryDOTearlyATgmailDOTcom. Write “Hymn Survey” in the subject line. I’d rather you didn’t leave your votes in my comments here because it’ll be easier to tabulate all the votes if they’re all in my email (plus I want everyone’s votes to be a surprise). Deadline for votes to be sent to me is May 31, 2009.

4. If you like, you can submit a justification for each hymn. Or you can send me a link to an audio or video version online. Include the name of the hymn’s author or lyricist and the composer of the melody you prefer if at all possible, especially if you think I might be unfamiliar with your particular hymn. At the beginning of June I will tally up the totals, and I will pull from the submitted pieces why one reader or another liked a particular hymn (naming the reader, of course). That way we’ll be able to hear from a whole bunch of people why they love one hymn or another. I will then count down from 100 to 1 over the course of the summer the top choices of what folks feel the best hymns of all time are.

I’m also going to talk to someone at my church to see if we can sing a lot of these favorites this summer in our worship services. As many of you know, churches get caught in ruts where they sing the same hymns over and over. I think singing some of the favorite hymns of the faith, even some that we may not have sung in many years, would do us good. By the way, I’m not any kind of expert on music or hymns, but I’ll bet I’ll be a lot more knowledgeable about both by the end of the summer.

Thanks in advance for your votes/nominations. I’m going to enjoy this little exercise, and I hope you will, too.

Oh, and if you don’t mind, I would appreciate your publicizing this poll on your blog. I’d like to get at least 100 nominations or lists for this survey; more would be even better. If you want to post your top ten list on your blog, that’s fine. Just be sure you send me a copy.

Seven Ten Fifteen Nineteen Twenty-five Thirty SIxty responses so far!

25 responses

  1. Laura says:

    I love your idea! I’ll work on my list this week – this will be an enjoyable task!

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Oh, this is a great idea. I’ll think about this and send my list!

  3. Lucile says:

    1. Great is Thy Faithfulness
    2. Shout to the Lord
    3. My Jesus I Love Thee
    4. Here I am to Worship
    5. The Power of Your Love
    6. Amazing Love
    7. Amazing Grace
    8. Draw Me Close to You
    9. Change My Heart O God
    10. Shine On Us

  4. Hold on, I’m coming. I just need some time. Thanks.

  5. […] Semicolon is compiling a survey of top 100 hymns and asks for input: more info. here. […]

  6. Sherry, I got my post up here:

    http://magistramater.xanga.com/702852596/top-10-hymns/

    I’ll send you an email too.

    Thanks for motivating me to do a great exercise. I think I will continue this on my blog until I’ve named my top 100. There are so many great ones.

  7. How fun! I’ve gotta think about this.

  8. Jim Skaggs says:

    1. How Firm a Foundation
    2. Be Thou My Vision
    3. The Lord’s My Shepherd, I’ll Not Want
    4. Of the Father’s Love Begotten
    5. God is Love, His Mercy Brightens
    6. God Moves in a Mysterious Way
    7. Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah
    8. He Who Would Valiant Be
    9. What Wondrous Love is This?
    10. Sometimes a Light Surprises

  9. Raymond Coffey says:

    Three is a distinction between hymns and ‘gospel’ songs. Too bad this distinction has not been observed. My top ten are
    1. Holy God, We Praise Your Name (Te Deum)
    2. A Mighty Fortress Is Our God
    3. Holy, Holy, Holy
    4. Be Thou My Vision
    5. Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
    6. O Sacred Head, Now Wounded
    7. Christ the Lord Is Risen Today
    8. Crown Him With Many Crowns
    9. All Glory, Laud and Honor
    10.Now All the Vault of Heaven Resounds

  10. Did you see mine? I posted it here and several people left their suggestions in the comments there as well.

  11. gb says:

    Sherry, Give us a checklist. I can’t think of all the songs I like…but I can easily think of the ones I hate!

  12. […] top ten hymnpicks By Haruo In response to a call for the question at Semicolon, I have posted my top ten picks as of May 31 at Mia […]

  13. Rev. diane Lee says:

    Have you come up with a final list of 100? My congregation wants to sing the top 10 hymns this summer and possibly more over a longer period of time, and I haven’t been able to find a good list. Especially one that gives the rankings and how the rankings came about.

  14. don gaudreau says:

    what happened to this thread? Was there a top hymn listed posted anywhere?

  15. […] Should Be Good about the top comic book runs.  Since I did it Semicolon came out with her Top 100 Hymns of All Time Poll.  Now Zooglobble is in on the act.  Zooglobble, should you be unfamiliar with it, is […]

  16. jonathan says:

    Here are some amazing hymns, in no perticular order:

    -Oh the deep deep love of Jesus
    -Abide with me
    -Just as I am
    -Blessed Assurance
    -Great is thy faithfulness
    -I know whom I have believed
    -To God be the glory
    -I surrender all
    -Crown him with many crowns
    -Amazing Grace

    you won’t regret listening nor singing those.

  17. Tim Olson says:

    Holy, Holy, Holy
    Great Is Thy Faithfulness
    A Mighty Fortress Is Our God
    Amazing Grace
    Be Thou My Vision
    Crown Him With Many Crowns
    It Is Well With My Soul
    To God Be The Glory
    When I Survey The Wondrous Cross
    Wonderful Grace Of Jesus

  18. Ivan says:

    Mine is:
    1. How Great thou art
    2. Amazing grace
    3. Shout to the Lord
    4.Higher Ground
    5.Because He Lives
    6. Majesty,Worship is Majesty
    7.It is well with my Soul
    8.Still
    9. Just as I’ am
    10.Mansion over the Hilltop

  19. Franklin says:

    In no particular order
    Be Thou My Vision, I Must Tell Jesus, Blessed Assurance, Come Thou Fount, In Christ Alone, It Is Well With My Soul, What a Friend We Have In Jesus, Doxology, My Jesus I Love Thee, and Be Still My Soul.

  20. Mike says:

    What makes a great hymn is great lyrics! You just can’t beat some of the classics! In no particular order, these are mostly little gems of theology set to music:

    1-And Can It Be
    2-Amazing Grace
    3-Great Is Thy Faithfulness
    4-When I Survey
    5-Be Thou My Vision
    6-How Great Thou Art
    7-King Of Kings, Majesty
    8-In Christ Alone
    9-Here Is Love, Vast As The Ocean
    10-Jesus Lover Of My Soul

  21. Kim says:

    Here is my list:

    1 – A Child of the King
    2 – The Crystal Fountain
    3 – Be Thou My Vision
    4 – Nearer My God to Thee
    5 – It is Well With My Soul
    6 – How Great Thou Art
    7 – There is a Fountain
    8 – Beulah Land
    9 – Is not This the Land of Beulah
    10 – Blessed Assurance

  22. Mike Risse says:

    Jesus, Lover of My Soul (Wesley)
    And Can it be
    Beneath the Cross of Jesus
    The Sands of Time are Sinking
    Abide with Me
    O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing
    When I Survey the Wondrous Cross
    Arise, My Soul Arise
    I was a wandering Sheep
    Jesus Keep me Near the Cross

  23. Julianna says:

    1. Mansion Over the Hilltop
    2. Goin’ Home
    3. Old Rugged Cross
    4. Beulah Land
    5. It Is Well With My Soul
    6. How Great Thou Art
    7. Jesus Paid It All
    8. Amazing Grace
    9. Victory In Jesus
    10. Great Is Thy Faithfulness

  24. […] like the following hymn very much, and I rather doubt it’s well known enough to make the Top 100 list, so I’m including it here for Poetry Friday. James Mountain who wrote the music for this hymn […]

  25. Grace says:

    1. Love Lifted Me
    2. I Love To Tell The Story
    3. Fairest Lord Jesus
    4. Near To The Heart Of God
    5. Saviour Like A Shepherd Lead Us
    6. Nothing But The Blood
    7. Nearer, My God To Thee
    8. I Know Whom I Have Believeth
    9. He Lives
    10. To God Be The Glory

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