For George Albert William Owen Thomas
Commissioned by Fr. Paul Thomas for St. James’s Church, Sussex Gardens.
The texts is adapted from two sections of the 1662 baptismal service:
Be stedfast in faith, be joyful through hope
Manfully fight under Christ’s banner
Be joyful through hope, and rooted in charity
Manfully fight against sin, the world, and the devil
That ye may so pass the waves of this troublesome world
And continue Christ’s faithful soldier and servant unto thy life’s end
That finally ye may come to the land of everlasting life.
The composer imagines the piece as a gentle lullaby between father and mother (soprano and bass) with interjections from other interested parties—perhaps godparents, family and friends. As the piece proceeds the lyrical nature of the solo lines begins to infect all of the parts, eventually bringing the work to a peaceful conclusion.
First Performance: Choir of St. James’s Church, Sussex Gardens conducted by George de Voil, 24th July 2018.