Grant Us Peace

Doves

THE SONG

A song of peace, originally written by Stephen McManus as a response to the `Troubles' in Northern Ireland and the beginning of the `Peace Process' there.

Listen to an mp3 audio demo:

LYRICS

A country once fair but one that was torn apart by the
conflict of war, of war; where the fam'lies bereft of
the ones they have loved face a future alone without
hope,without hope.

GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE,
O LORD GRANT US PEACE,
IN OUR COUNTRY AND IN OUR WORLD.
GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE, O LORD
GRANT US PEACE, A PEACE THAT WILL LAST
FOREVER MORE.

But hope, like a ray from the sun above, has pierced
the cloud of despair, of despair. This beacon of
light, a pathway to peace, will shine forth throughout
the world, the world.

GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE,
O LORD GRANT US PEACE,
IN OUR COUNTRY AND IN OUR WORLD.
GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE, O LORD
GRANT US PEACE, A PEACE THAT WILL LAST
FOREVER MORE.

May we now seize this chance to rebuild and renew
our lives, our hopes and our dreams, our dreams.
We must break all the chains of distrust, doubt and
fear as we step out in faith in your name, O Lord.

GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE,
O LORD GRANT US PEACE,
IN OUR COUNTRY AND IN OUR WORLD.
GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE, O LORD
GRANT US PEACE, A PEACE THAT WILL LAST
FOREVER MORE.

GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE,
O LORD GRANT US PEACE,
IN OUR COUNTRY AND IN OUR WORLD.
GRANT US PEACE, GRANT US PEACE, O LORD
GRANT US PEACE, A PEACE THAT WILL LAST
FOREVER MORE.

© Stephen McManus 2000

NEWSPAPER REPORT

Jefferson Elementary students will “give peace a chance” tonight at the school’s annual fifth-grade recognition ceremony. The school’s entire fifth-grade class will present a world premiere performance of a song titled “Grant Us Peace” at 7 p.m. in the Jefferson gym.

The song was written by Irish composer Stephen McManus five years ago and made its way to Norman by way of Jefferson parent Lisa Stafford.

Stafford is something of a composer herself and began communicating with McManus after visiting a Web site that featured some of the Irish composer’s songs. For about a year now, the two composers have been in communication via e-mail, exchanging songs and sharing musical ideas.

A few months ago, McManus sent Stafford a song called “Grant Us Peace.” Stafford said the song instantly touched her, and she began to envision the lyrics being sung by children.

“I immediately thought of children’s voices,” Stafford said. “The song is so moving and so inspirational.” According to Stafford, McManus originally composed “Grant Us Peace” in 1998 to commemorate the Northern Ireland Peace Accord. After that, the song remained in McManus’ file of songs until he shared it with Stafford.

“He sent me the song a couple of months before war broke out in Iraq,” Stafford said. “This piece really does touch people’s hearts.”

Once Stafford got her hands on the song, she immediately shared it with Jefferson’s vocal music teacher, Carol Webb.

After the song was shared with Webb and Jefferson principal Kathy Taber, it was added to the end-of-the-year fifth-grade recognition ceremony. Webb has spent the past several weeks preparing the fifth-graders for their world premiere performance.

Tonight’s performance of “Grant Us Peace” will include piano accompaniment by Michael Stafford, the 11-year-old son of Lisa Stafford.

Jefferson Elementary faculty and administration will join in tonight’s musical festivities as well.

Taber will play the flute, strings teacher Steve Waddell will play the violin and Webb will conduct the group. Although McManus entered the song in a song writing contest in Ireland several years ago, it has never been performed in a public forum until now.

Stafford said she expects the song to stir the emotions of the audience.

“This song really does seem to touch people’s hearts,” Stafford said. “It came from across the sea, and it was written several years ago, but it’s just as fitting today as it was then. Peace is something universal that we all hope and wish for.”

Keith Dinwiddie, Norman Transcript, May 20th, 2003

Autographs of the singers!

Autographs

MUSIC SCORE

View and save the musical score [PDF]

COPYRIGHT

The song is free to use for non-commercial purposes, but see the notice on Stephen McManus's copyright page.

OTHER WORKS

For other material by this composer please visit the Stephen McManus Music website.

Fleur


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