After nearly four years of work, the committee responsible for the New Adventist Hymnal announced the release date, set for July 8. On this occasion, the public will be able to know the details of the work that brings together 600 hymns, in addition to other news.
The graphic design was reformulated to give greater prominence to the doctrinal identity of the Adventist Church. For this, 230 hymns were removed that are in the current version, released in 1996. In their place, another 220 hymns that were not part of the repertoire were chosen. That means it will be ten less. However, the commission responsible for the project was made up of leaders from the Adventist Church's administrative headquarters for eight countries in South America (South American Division [DSA]), the Brazilian Publishing House (CPB), and other collaborators representing Adventists from around the country. Representatives explain that the changes make the material more relevant and present in the daily life of the church.
With that said, how was the work of this organizing committee? Those who participated in it guarantee there was a lot to be done. Created in March 2018, it was divided into at least three fronts, and on April 26, 2022, the first pages were printed at the CPB headquarters, in Tatuí, São Paulo. Keep reading to understand part of the process.
One of them was the theological analysis of the letters. Each hymn underwent careful reading, which led to some alterations so all the lyrics were in line with biblical theology and highlighted the correct emphases.
Another group analyzed the hymns from a poetic perspective. Four changes were made: (1) to make the language simpler and more accessible, reaching a larger group of members, mainly children and young people; (2) to correct the occasional grammatical slip; (3) to make the letter aesthetically more beautiful and attractive; (4) replace words that over time have fallen into disuse or those that have acquired other meanings. For example, the phrase “Come, boys” was replaced with “Come, children,” and the meter and melodic beauty remained.
The third of the main work fronts analyzed the scores of the hymns from the musical point of view. Adaptations were made in relation to the tone of the music so more people could reach the correct vocal pitch. In addition, melody corrections were made to facilitate and enrich the harmony.
Congregational worship performed with the New Adventist Hymnal may involve many instruments and voices. This work of many voices is similar to the process that involved many hands for Portuguese-speaking Adventists to have the best in Christian hymnology. The full result will be known at the launch of the work, scheduled for July 8, 2022, at 7 p.m., on CPB's social networks and TV Novo Tempo.
For Pastor Stanley Arco, president of the Adventist Church for Brazil and seven other countries in South America, the New Adventist Hymnal will be present in the praises on several occasions throughout an Adventist's week.
“The Adventist Hymnal has always been an inspiration in our services. And we want, with this new edition, to reinforce our core beliefs in the hearts of our members, strengthen our identity, and boost our greatest hope. We hope these praises will be a constant part of worship in our churches, be part of small groups, be part of family worship, and inspire generations to continue to focus on mission and prepare for that big day," he said.