Psalm of the Month

Bulletin insert downloads

About this series

URC Psalmody has a New Year’s resolution for 2015, and it’s a simple one: Get to know the new Psalter Hymnal.

The songbook under construction by the United Reformed Churches in North America and the Orthodox Presbyterian Church is potentially less than three years away from completion. But surprisingly few church members—even musically inclined ones—are aware of the details of this project, and even fewer are acquainted with the new Psalter Hymnal’s actual contents. While browsing through the sheet music of the already-approved Psalm Proposal (online at PsalterHymnal.org), I’ve often wondered: Shouldn’t we get a head start on all this new music?

As I pondered ways to become familiar with the new texts and tunes of the Psalm Proposal, the idea for a set of monthly bulletin inserts gradually took shape. Many churches already devote themselves to learning a particular psalm or hymn each month in worship or in song services; why not recommend several new but easy-to-learn selections from the proposal?

URC Psalmody’s Psalm of the Month series of bulletin inserts for 2015 is an attempt to do just that: to encourage churches and church members to begin exploring the wealth of new material in the URC/OPC Psalter Hymnal, both corporately and individually.

Interested? Here are a few questions you may be asking:

How do I download the bulletin inserts?

PDF files of all thirteen bulletin inserts (12 months + 1 introductory insert) will be posted on this page. Currently all but five inserts are complete.

How should the bulletin inserts be printed?

The inserts are designed to fill both sides of a half-sheet inserted in your church’s weekly bulletin. For efficient duplication, these documents should be printed double-sided with the flip on the short side. Alternatively, you can print both halves of the inserts single-sided and print the sheet music of the psalm on the reverse.

Where do I get the sheet music?

All of the Psalm Proposal’s sheet music is available online at PsalterHymnal.org. Follow the directions posted there to obtain access to the database, then find the PDF of the psalm selection matching the monthly bulletin insert. The filename for Psalm 92A, for example, is “Psalm_092A-Darwall.pdf.” Download, print, and enjoy! (Note the copyright-related printing restrictions described on PsalterHymnal.org’s home page.)

Are these inserts produced by the Psalter Hymnal Committees?

No, they’re not. As you read, keep in mind that the views and opinions I present are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Psalter Hymnal Committees, or, for that matter, the URCNA and OPC.

Is this series only for URC churches?

Not a bit. Although these inserts are written with the URCNA as their primary audience (and make frequent reference to the blue Psalter Hymnal our churches already use), I’d love to see them used in Orthodox Presbyterian congregations and other churches interested in the new songbook as well.

Also, while these articles are intended to be used as church-wide bulletin inserts, they can certainly be utilized individually as well. Their contents will be published monthly as blog posts here on URC Psalmody for that purpose.

Where can I find more information?

This introductory bulletin insert is intended to give you and your church’s members an overview of the project. I’d suggest distributing it with the first insert in the series, or a week in advance.

As always, feel free to contact me with any additional questions.

In summary, I’m eager to start a new year with a survey of an excellent new psalter. May this project encourage congregations as they “sing to the Lord a new song” and “tell of his salvation from day to day” (Psalm 96)!

Michael Kearney
West Sayville URC
Long Island, New York

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