All Other Ground



Performance time: 2:20; Forces: SAB chorus, piano; Meter: 3/4; Tempo: With motion and intensity, q = 104; Language: English; Dedication: For the Choir of Calvary Baptist Church, Hopewell, NJ

Christian music ministry performs both a pastoral role and a prophetic one, with the same piece of music often supporting both. This quintessentially Protestant hymn has been a source of hope and assurance for worshipers gathered and in private for much of two centuries, but its refrain ending, “All other ground is sinking sand,” has sounded to me like an alarm or warning that, like the parable it refers to, is meant to be heeded. This new setting makes a fresh and compelling medium for it.