Father In Heaven, We Do Believe is a beautiful sacrament hymn with a powerful message. The text was written by Parley P. Pratt, one of the most amazing and fascinating people in the history of the LDS church. He was a great missionary, a prophet of God and a special witness of the Lord Jesus Christ, for whom he was martyred. His poetic gifts, so clearly displayed throughout our hymnal, are a measure of the formidable influence of the Spirit in his life.
If you think about it, the ordinance of the sacrament begins as the bread is being broken. The hymn sung as the bread is broken is an important part of the ordinance, as it invites us to remember the Atonement of the Savior and contemplate the direct effect it has on us, both individually and as a group.
The setting of this hymn, while equally beautiful, provides a bit of a challenge for LDS organists. This hymn is only about two minutes long, but the sacrament takes about two and a half to three minutes to prepare in most congregations. As a result, the congregation either sits in silence or the organist plays the hymn over and over until the remainder of the sacrament is prepared.
Some would argue that silence is not necessarily a bad thing and I acknowledge their point. However, I think that having music playing while the sacrament is prepared can add to the spirituality of the occasion. Sometimes I will improvise on the hymn tune during this time, but in doing so I try very hard to not detract from the sacred ordinance that is taking place.
Father In Heaven We Do Believe — PDF
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One thought on “Father In Heaven, We Do Believe”
Harold, I very much enjoyed this setting of a favorite hymn. It is reverential and much in harmony with the ordinance. Keep up the good work. “In Remembrance of Thy Suffering” next? Your brother