Gather Us In by Marty Haugen. My comments are in italics.
Here in this place, new light is streaming
Now is the darkness vanished away
See in this space our fears and our dreamings
Brought here to you in the light of this day
Alright. I’m assuming the song is talking about church. “Place must mean church”. But I don’t necessarily bring my fears to church. I try to pray to God during Mass. I don’t see how dreamings are brought by light.
Gather us in the lost and forsaken
Gather us in the blind and the lame
Call to us now and we shall awaken
We shall arise at the sound of our name
Okay, those who are lost, forsaken, blind, and lame are certain welcome at Mass. But what is this really talking about: “we shall awaken”? So we went to Mass asleep?
We are the young our lives are a mystery
We are the old who yearn for you face
We have been sung throughout all of history
Called to be light to the whole human race
So we’re young and old. “We have been sung”. Why can’t we sing about…oh, I don’t know…God? …instead of ourselves…*
Gather us in the rich and the haughty
Gather us in the proud and the strong
Give us a heart so meek and so lowly
Give us the courage to enter the song
The “Give us” parts are actually prayerful. If the tune weren’t so insipid, those parts might actually be nice to sing.
Here we all take the wine and the water
Here we will take the bread of new birth
Here you shall call your sons and your daughters
Call us anew to be salt for the earth
*Okay, it’s nice that we’ve alluded to the Eucharist. *
Give us to drink the wine of compassion
Give us to eat the bread that is you
Nourish us well, and teach us to fashion
Lives that are holy and hearts that are true
More Eucharist! This is probably the best verse.
Not in the dark of buildings confining
Not in some heaven, light-years away
here in this place the new light is shining
Now is the Kingdom, now is the day
*Some heaven?!? … *
Gather us in and hold us forever
Gather us in and make us your own
Gather us in all peoples together
Fire of love in our peoples together
The words: Eucharist, God, Jesus, Virgin Mary, Trinity, Divinity all were not mentioned once. The word … us can be found sixteen times. Comments, anyone?