Shelter Me - Joncas

This song / prayer was written by American Roman Catholic priest and liturgical composer, Jan Michael Joncas (b 1951) in late March 2020.    It was composed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic which affected the world in late 2019 / early 2020.  Copyright belongs to the Jan Michael Joncas Trust.

The text is a paraphrase of Psalm 23 (the Lord's my shepherd), especially the second verse which acknowledges the experience of “walking in the valley of the shadow of death.”

A melody-line edition was published by GIA Publications, and it may reproduced, without charge, for worship use for one year provided the copyright notice remains intact (ref).

It is set to an unnamed tune by Joncas. This has a 4/4 time signature. In the key of F, the first few notes of  the refrain are FAF D_  FAF C_



Downloads

The score, congregation refrain and a statement from the composer are available here.

Examples


A version of the tune with simplified chords can be heard in the midi file on the SixMaddens website.


Choir (possibly virtual) with orchestra - excellent quality recording:



Singer with piano - Covid-19 graphics:



Singer self-accompanied on guitar, with mixed multi-instrument backing:



Duet with piano - original non-professional recording:


Small group with accompaniment:



Virtual-choir recording, piano-led with flute, violin singer:



Instrumental - piano and violin duet:



Instrumental (piano) with contrasting lead voice and on-screen melody line:


Lyrics

The lyrics are currently available on this website and they reproduced below on a time-limited basis in keeping with the original release and composer's statement:
1. Shepherd and sheep, my God and I:
to fresh green fields you led my steps in days gone by.
You gave me rest by quiet springs
and filled my soul with peace your loving presence brings.

Chorus:
O shelter me, O shelter me:
the way ahead is dark and difficult to see.
O shelter me, O shelter me:
all will be well if only you will shelter me.

2. Yet now I tread a diff’rent way;
death dogs my path with stealthy steps from day to day.
I cannot find your peaceful place
but dwell in dreary darkness, longing for your face.

3. I will look back in days to come
and realize your faithfulness has led me home.
Within your house I’ll find my peace,
trusting that in your mercy you have sheltered me.

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KEEP IN CASE ORIGINAL IS REMOVED, BUT DO NOT DISPLAY
1. Shepherd and sheep, my God and I:
to fresh green fields you led my steps in days gone by.
You gave me rest by quiet springs
and filled my soul with peace your loving presence brings.

Chorus:
O shelter me, O shelter me:
the way ahead is dark and difficult to see.
O shelter me, O shelter me:
all will be well if only you will shelter me.

2. Yet now I tread a diff’rent way;
death dogs my path with stealthy steps from day to day.
I cannot find your peaceful place
but dwell in dreary darkness, longing for your face.

3. I will look back in days to come
and realise your faithfulness has led me home.
Within your house I’ll find my peace,
trusting that in your mercy you have sheltered me.

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6 comments:

  1. Can I get this song with chords for Guitar

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, my group just recorded another version of Shelter Me — including SATB in seven parts (technically SAATTBB). You can find it here:
    https://youtu.be/F3KifN7Jfpc

    Perhaps you might consider adding it to the above?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi are there chords for this beautiful music
    Thank you so much it brightened my day

    ReplyDelete
  4. Plymouth Presbyterian Church and Friends also recorded "A virtual Choir" of Shelter Me

    https://youtu.be/OrhjDTGRsFQ

    ReplyDelete