Bits and Bites Newsletter

Bits and Bites May 14, 2020
- Posted 2020-05-14 19:39:34

“Change your opinions, keep to your principles; change your leaves, keep intact your roots.”

Victor Hugo


Is it too early to say we’re finding our groove in these rather unsettling times?  We haven’t  blown up any of our new techno-toys (yet) and the on-line Services are drawing in a crowd!  Rev. Adam and Team Telephone are keeping us connected and the Food Bank drop off is still open for contributions on my front steps (39 Division St).  The Bible Study, Ladies Bible Study, and Friday Morning Coffee Lounge are Zooming to great effect every Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning.  You can get the “invitation” required from Rev Adam – – and he can help you get set up as well.


Thanks to everyone for navigating The Great Givings Maze!  The new Donation button on our website – – seems to work for Visitors and more than a few of us are coming to grips with the Interac e-transfer gizmo on our online banking.  But the Old Ways are still the Best Ways for lots of people.  Remember, you can always drop a cheque off at The GP mail box or you can bring cheques or cash around to Linda Caldwell or myself at home. 


Buttons, buttons, who’s got the buttons?  The ear-saver makers send their thank-you’s to those who have dug out their button boxes and contributed to the cause.  I think we’ve even had one or two people offer to help make the Mask Mates – which is a very good thing.  The group is churning them out as requests come in by the hundreds from across Canada so if you can contribute, or crochet (or knit or sew) or even stitch on buttons, don’t be backward about coming forward!


I gotta be honest:  I don’t have a whole lot of bits or bites for you this week but I did come across something a bit mind-boggling as we set up for this Sunday’s e-Service. 


So – Linda’s chosen a BIG favourite for one of our hymns:  How Great Thou Art.  Woot!  So – there I go searching for the words on-line so we can get them up with the video and I come across the background to the words.  Get this:


The original poem was written by a Swede in Sweden, then translated into German by an Estonian (who died later in Brazil).  It became popular in Germany, then translated into Russian so it took off in Russia.  A professor in Illinois translated it into English but it didn’t catch on.  Then an English Methodist missionary (who was raised Salvation Army) heard it in Russian in the Ukraine and translated it into English and added a couple of his own verses.  He returned to England to work in a Polish refugee camp and published a Russian gospel magazine which took it to Africa and India. (Honest.  I’m not making this up.)  A Mennonite missionary there transcribed a version of it that was being sung by a tribal choir in Assam (India) which was picked up by a Californian theologian and brought to the USA.  Manna Music – founded by a former member of “The Sons of the Pioneers” – published it and it came to the attention of the Billy Graham Crusades when they were visiting England in 1954.  And, of course, then George Beverly Shea scooped it up and the rest, as they say, is history.


Well, I thought that was a real trip and a half!  Side note:  it was originally nine verses long.  Great hymn but nine verses plus chorus must have made for a reeeeaaaaallly long service.


So, in the absence of anyone doing their homework (again: teacher’s scowl) I shall pack in for now and get to work on Sunday’s service. "See" you then!


Keep safe, keep well, and God Bless.


“Home computers are being called upon to perform many new functions, including the consumption of homework formerly eaten by the dog.”

Doug Larson

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