Hymn of the Week: August 15
by William "Pat" Partridge
Canon Precentor Organist and Choirmaster
Hymn 446: Praise to the holiest in the height
This hymn was extracted from the lengthy poem, The Dream of Gerontius (1865), by John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890), later made famous by the oratorio of Sir Edward Elgar. Newman, a major figure in English ecclesiastical history, is remembered for many things that reflect his incredible gifts as a theologian, reformer, and author.
The hymn tune NEWMAN, which is strongly associated with this text in British Roman Catholic hymnals, has gained acceptance and used with other texts in the hymnals of largely British Protestant denominations. It first appeared in an Episcopal publication using the name Newman in the Hymnal 1940, matched with this text. This tune was composed for Newman's text by Richard Runciman Terry, Director of Music at the Roman Catholic Westminster Cathedral, London.
LISTEN to a performance of this hymn by the choir at Christ Church Cathedral.