Ascension Lutheran Church – Citrus Heights, CA – Sierra Pacific Synod, ELCA

Hymn of the Week for January 22, 2023 – All the People Said Amen

Blessed are the poor in spirit who are torn apart
Blessed are the persecuted and the pure in heart
Blessed are the people hungry for another start
For theirs is the kingdom, the kingdom of God

If you spent any time listening to Christian radio 8-10 years ago, you probably heard All the People Said Amen played once or twenty times.  Along with Paul Moak and Trevor Morgan, Matt Maher wrote this song which is full of references and allusions to the Beatitudes which are the gospel read and preaching text for this Sunday, January 22, 2023.

Matt Maher is one of that rare breed of contemporary Christian musicians who is equally at home writing and recording for radio and concerts performances and writing liturgical music for Mass.  A practicing Roman Catholic, Maher was born and raised in Newfoundland, Canada, where he discovered a love for music at a very early age.  He studied music at the Memorial University of Newfoundland and graduated from Arizona State University. Maher’s first three albums were recorded on the Spirit and Song label of OCP Publications.   His next eight have been on the Essential label.  Maher now resides in Nashville with his family.

The title track of the album of the same name, All the People Said Amen is an exuberant song which joyfully wrestles with some of the paradoxes found in the Beatitudes – the kingdom of God belongs to the lonely, downtrodden, poor, persecuted, hungry.  And what should our response be?  To give thanks to the Lord for His love never ends!