To the dark place bring a candle (website only)

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VERSION 1
“for use in times of war, terrorist attack or natural disaster”

To the dark place bring a candle,
to the cold place bring a flame,
in the night of our despairing
light and warmth shall come again;
for the candle in the darkness
is the light that shines the way,
and the flame that burns within us
is the hope that brings the day.

To the helpless and bewildered,
to the victims of the gun,
bring the suffering, dying Jesus,
bring God’s broken, murdered Son;
he who brings no easy answer
to the heart that will not mend
suffers in us and beside us
and is with us to the end.

[WAR/ACT OF TERRORISM]

To the ones whose love lies buried
‘neath the mud and fading flowers,
bring the calm that rests the weary
in the darkest of all hours;
he, who in the tomb lay broken
travels with us through our night,
by his word of love once spoken
brings the candle-glow of light.

[STORM/FLOOD]

To the ones whose homes are threatened
by the rising storm’s dread powers,
bring the calm that rests the weary
in the darkest of all hours;
he, who in the tomb lay broken
travels with us through our night,
by his word of love once spoken
brings the candle-glow of light.

To us, as the storm-clouds gather,
in the skies of west and east,
to us, fearful of the future,
of the threat of war unleashed,
to our world, of peace despairing,
to our world of threat and blame
to our dark place bring a candle,
to our cold place bring a flame.

VERSION 2
“for those caring for older people with memory loss”

To the dark place bring a candle,
to the cold place bring a flame,
in the night of our despairing
light and warmth shall come again;
for the candle in the darkness
is the light that shines the way,
and the flame that burns within us
is the hope that brings the day.

To the helpless and bewildered,
to the lonely and confused
bring the suffering, dying Jesus,
broken, murdered and abused;
he who brings no easy answer
to the heart that will not mend
suffers in us and beside us
and is with us to the end.

To the ones whose love lies buried
deep beyond their memory’s powers
bring the calm that rests the weary
in the darkest of all hours;
he, who in the tomb lay broken
travels with us through our night,
by his word of love once spoken
brings the candle-glow of light.

And to those who suffer, caring
for their parents, partners, friends,
come to them, compassion bearing,
come, that love that knows no ends
to them, in the night, despairing,
to them in their fear and blame
to the dark place bring a candle,
to the cold place bring a flame.

Words: © Richard Lucas

Metre: 87.87.D

Suggested tune: Scarlet Ribbons (StF 131)

More information

Richard writes: “This hymn was originally written and sung in the immediate aftermath of the killing of children in Dunblane in March 1996. It has been revised a number of times as world events have unfolded. Two versions are included above. The first is suitable for use in times of war or terrorist attack; the second can be of use when we remember the work of those who care for older people with memory problems and Dementia.”

Categories: 87.87.D. (Trochaic), Conflict, Suffering and Doubt, Human Life and Relationships, Hymns only online (submit to stfplus@methodistchurch.org.uk), Lucas, Richard, Scarlet Ribbons.

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