We Thus Acclaim
May the trembling soul / Find itself made whole / And the tongue-tangled be at rest.
By the ember bright / And the angel’s flight / May these lips by our God be blessed.
For many wait / And the hour is late / And the harvest is ripe with grain;
Holy voices blend, / Asking whom to send; / Is there one that we might ordain?
When the path may run / By the outcast one / Whom the world ever seeks confuse,
Make the words be clear, / That they cast out fear / And proclaim to each one good news.
That God does save / By the washing wave / And the promise of this wet Word.
Every child of sod / Is a child of God / At the font when God’s grace is heard.
When the mourners weep / In their anguish deep / And it seems as if all is lost;
When the searching ones / Whether daughters, sons, / Find themselves by their questions tossed;
Then speak their name / And the promise claim / As you bid them to share this meal.
In the wine thus poured / There we meet the Lord; / In the bread-breaking, mercy seal.
From a humble state / And from God who’s great / Comes this simple and heartfelt plea:
That his(her) heart be new, / And his(her) drum beat true, / And his(her) tales speak of jubilee
May all his(her) life, / From the joy to strife, / Be the bush where your Presence burns
And from face to face / Let him(her) bear your Grace / In each place where the world now turns!
Refrain (sing twice after last verse)
We thus acclaim by your holy name / That this one by your Spirit stirred,
May ordained now be to the ministry / Of the meal and the font and the Word.
Text: David R. Weiss, b. 1959 (© 2010 David R. Weiss)
Tune: Irish Traditional, Star of the County Down (“Canticle of the Turning, ELW # 723 – public domain)
Permission is given to photocopy We Thus Acclaim for use in worship.
Author’s Note: This hymn was written for the 2010 ordination of Jason Chesnut. Each of his chosen texts: Isaiah 6:1-8 (Isaiah’s call); Acts 8:26-40 (the Ethiopian eunuch); and John 20:11-18 (Mary weeping at the tomb) is echoed in one verse of the hymn. The final verse has been slightly adapted to be suitable for use at any ordination, the pronoun “his” or “her” becoming specific to the one being ordained (this verse also pays respect to “The Canticle of Turning,” whose tune is borrowed here).