Sacred Music Friday: Distant Land

Distant Land by John Rutter, The State College Master Singers and Chamber Orchestra. This was written about the fall of the Berlin Wall, but it seemed appropriate for this 4th of July holiday weekend. The lyrics are below.

I see a distant land: it shines so clear.
Sometimes it seems so far, sometimes so near.
Come, join together, take the dusty road;
Help one another: share the heavy load.
The journey may be long: no end in sight:
There may be hills to climb, or giants to fight:
But if you’ll take my hand,
We’ll walk together toward the land
Of freedom, freedom, freedom.

I hear a distant song: it fills the air.
I hear it, deep and strong, rise up in prayer:
‘O Lord, we are many; help us to be one.
Heal our divisions: let thy will be done.’
I know the time will come when war must cease:
A time of truth and love, a time of peace.
The people cry, ‘How long?
Ttill all our world can join the song
Of freedom, freedom.’

I touch a distant hand and feel its glow,
The hand I hoped was there: at last I know.
Swords into ploughshares: can it all be true?
Friends out of strangers: start with me and you.
I see another time, another place
Where we can all be one, one human race.
The walls will melt away,
We’ll come together on the day
Of freedom, freedom, freedom.

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