Every morning when I get up I’ll grab a cup of coffee and look for the newest outrage, source of anger, frustration, cancel culture targets etc. The other day I found out it’s wrong to talk about “whitening” in toothpaste, and the fact that realtors will no longer talk about a “master bedroom” when showing a house. In a day when everything seems to be in crisis it is amazing how much trivia and silliness there is around us.
Somewhere in the mix there was a huge argument on a radio station I was listening to about a Black National Anthem that would be played either before the old National Anthem or instead of it. I have to admit to being a bit surprised and wondering what it would be, who would write it, and the style in which it would be written.
It was then that memory kicked in. I had a flashback to a meeting that took place between the Board of International Missions and the Board of National Missions for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. Before every meeting we would have our devotion and during the divorce Shirley what do usually sing a hymn. Copies of the Lutheran Services book would be handed out and we would sing a cappella. For whatever reason and one of my meetings the subject of the national anthem came up and one of the black Pastors in our church body who is serving on the board mentioned that there was a Black National Anthem. He is a patriotic gentlemen who served in the military for years and I asked him what’s the name of the anthem was and he said “let’s just sing it, it is in the hymn book on page 964”. And there it was, “Lift Every Voice and Sing”. It was written by James Weldon Johnson and it is a catchy tune on the first page but gets a little tough on the second.
So there we have it. Another National Anthem. I am waiting for the complaints that it focuses on God too much.