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The following article is displayed courtesy of the Worcester Telegram and Gazette, Worcester, MA.
See the bottom of the article for a correction to a error in the text.
Correction:Go To The Top of the Page
This article contains an unintentional error in the text. The
song often sung in modern church services, now known as the "Doxology"
or "Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow", has the same melody as
the song known to the Pilgrims as "Old One Hundreth" which was based on
the 100th psalm. Click here to learn more about the origins of this song and it's history.
It's last line was NOT "Oh Lord make us free".
song whose last line is "Oh Lord, make us free." is one the Pilgrims
learned in Leyden while they were in Holland just prior to their
embarking on their voyage to the new world. This song is still sung
today but now it is known as our "Thanksgiving Hymn" or "We Gather
Together To Ask The Lord's Blessing." The song is essentially a prayer
for freedom, a radical almost unknown concept in the early 1600's when
kingdoms were the only form of government and the state approved
religion was the only one allowed. This song brought the idea of
freedom to New England and Dutch settlers who came to New York chose
this song to be included in their first hymnal. This seems to indicate
that in the beginning the song was not at first sung during church
services in either New England or New York but in homes and at private
gatherings. Originally a prayer for freedom against religious
persecution, it helped germinate and reinforce the general notion
of freedom in this country each time it has been sung, ever since the
1620's. These days many children still learn this song in school as a
part of their Thanksgiving history lessons, few realizing it's original
intent and significance. For more historical information about this song click here.