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"How Great Thou Art" (Images courtesy of Merge PR)

Proceeds from anniversary recording of “How Great Thou Art” to benefit Ukraine war victims

Many of today’s most popular Christian musicians are teaming up on an updated version of “How Great Thou Art” to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the beloved hymn.

great thou

“How Great Thou Art” (Images courtesy of Merge PR)

Worship leader Matt Redman recently talked about his collaboration with performers as Chris Tomlin, Hillary Scott, Kari Jobe, Cody Carnes, Naomi Raine, Blessing Offor, Jon Reddick, TAYA, Brian and Jenn Johnson, Matt Maher, Pat Barrett, Benjamin William Hastings, Ryan Ellis and Mitch Wong. The wide array of such prominent voices speaks to the song’s prevalence in the church today.

“You go around churches, different streams and expressions of church — you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t find some kind of connection to this hymn,” Redman said, noting that the song spread like wildfire after it started being played at Billy Graham crusades.

The worship singer offered his perspective on why he believes “How Great Thou Art” has been such a timeless and popular song:

“I think it might be because it has this beautiful story, starts with creation, gets the cross, but we get our chance to say what we think about those things,” Redman told CBN News. “I think some of the best hymns, they’re like a classroom and a chapel — they educate us, inspire us, bring something to mind and then they give us a chance to respond to that, say what we think about that.”

He said the song, unlike many old hymns, is still under copyright. The copyright holder approached Redman and asked him if there was a way to celebrate the song’s 75th anniversary. Considering what’s happening in Ukraine as Russia continues to battle the much smaller nation, the song’s history becomes even more pertinent. Redman shared a historical fact about the tune: British missionary Stuart Hine wrote the English lyrics while in Ukraine.

Redman believed it was an “especially poignant time to have a new version,” with proceeds going to Ukraine and humanitarian causes in Eastern Europe. The 2024 version of “How Great Thou Art” includes a brand-new section that Redman hopes will inspire Christians walking in a “broken, warring world.”

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice

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