Review in Methodist Recorder, 9th December 2022
by Tony Jasper
“I flock through material that has been carried in this paper during 2022 and realise that to some extent I have spent much time exploring the classics, songs and artist catalogue. The exception to this rests in the continuing issue or worship material and then, thankfully, every now and then, well, he comes, he’s the exception, he does his own thing, releases his own recordings, knows how to write a good song, is adept at using vocal back-ups and well, he pens material that can be sung by an audience.
This man is Garth Hewitt. Google terms him a ‘troubadour, singer, songwriter, spiritual songs UK’. And more. His CD list is considerable and often it reflects his abiding concerns with Palestine and its oppression. His most unexpected and one treasured by many is Liberty is Near! in which he sings from the extraordinary ‘The National Chartist Hymnbook 1845.’
Garth is an exceptional faith writer and performer and if you have the opportunity book him for your church*. No sugar with Garth, no sugary winsome material, just gutsy and often fiery material, radical faith and rooted in Jesus’ teaching. It seems he is the last of recent years from the surfeit of faith recordings and who is still there!”
O God, just and loving,
May we find a way to speak up
for those who are being brutalised,
ignored or forgotten.
May we be those who speak up for refugees,
May we be those who speak up for the oppressed in Palestine
May we bring support where we can and may we never be silent.
Love is never silent and justice is never silent –
May we find ways to speak up
Especially when our sisters and brothers are asking for our solidarity –
with our voices telling the story.
May we echo the Palestinian Christian “Cry for hope”
And stand against injustice and apartheid –
And stand against the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.
May we show the love and justice of Jesus
And find ways for our voices to tell the story.
And may the God who dances in creation
Who embraces us with human love
Who shakes our lives like thunder
Bless us and drive us out with power
To fill the world with her justice.
The final paragraph is a blessing from St Hilda’s Community
Garth Hewitt writes redemption songs
and then sings them without fear.
His voice comes through clearly,
challenging us by his witness to act for justice. His is a brave voice,
needed more than ever in a fearful world, and in a sometimes timid church.
Please God, it will help us
sing redemption songs of our own.
The Revd Lucy Winkett
Rector, St James’s Piccadilly
previous Chair of Trustees of Amos Trust