Commissioned by Alan Smith
Written in Peru
Completed, Cuzco, 11.v. Pentecost 2008.

Mary - Soprano
Narrator - Alto
Jesus - Tenor
Peter - Bass

Choir to be split into two mixed choirs as required

i. Fanfare - Choir

Starting loud, getting quieter and dispirited

Christ is risen!
Christ has conquered death.
Now gone to heaven
Christ is risen.

ii. Prologue - Choir

Chorus: O force that makes the waters flow
O fire that glows all gloom away
O strength of grace no limits know
Come down and comfort us we pray.

A1. Our hearts with joy and sorrow filled,
His death and rising harsh in us collide;
He left and now we pray uncertain still,
Await the Spirit promised as our guide.

A2. Our torment heightened at the tomb
He soothed away with wounds and broken bread
Which we break now fast in the upper room
Preparing to proclaim the word he said.


B. O light of Christ
Descend today
Re-make our lives
Descend we pray.

A3. As days go by the wonder fades,
Praying is torment, guilt in every vein;
Where there was love now only pained restraint:
Come Holy Spirit, save us once again.

C. Water of life
Fire of the spirit
Fill us with grace
Beyond all limit.


iii. Recitatif & Aria - Peter

Each dawn I hear my angel crow,
Bitter as the unripe olives of Gethsemane;
His wounds my leprous accusation glow,
Each nail a blow
And traitor written in each face I see:

A1. O do you love me? Feed my lambs.
O do you love me? Feed my sheep.
A fisherman, a broken net,
Shallow my faith I sink into the deep.

A2. O do you love me? Wash my feet
O do you love me? Wash my face.
Water of life that gave me fish
Has ruined me with infinite disgrace.

B. O yes I love you even though
I lack the strength to tell you so;
O yes I love you but I need
To learn again if I am to succeed:

A3. O do you love me? Watch and pray.
O do you love me? Sheathe your sword.
The bravery that flickered bright
Died in the fire where I betrayed my lord.

Da Capo

A1. O do you love me? Feed my lambs.
O Do you love me? Feed my sheep.

iv. Recitatif - Narrator

And Jesus led his disciples out to the Mount of Olives
Above the place where he had watched and prayed
And told them of the Scriptures and the time to come:

v. Aria - Jesus

1. Children of sorrow, trial and pain
You carry what I give to you today;
What you have seen in me is yours
And I will send the Spirit to sustain:
What prophets saw has lived in me
And through my death their promised liberty.

2. Children of passion, prayer and praise
In you my word will spread beyond the sea;
What you have seen in me is you,
God in the man in bread and Calvary:
No task too great for you to face
Filled with the Spirit's everlasting grace.

3. Children of triumph, Martyr crowns
Will grace eternal brows, the battle won;
What you will see in me is yours
When you embrace The Father as his sons:
Our pain together sets all free
To live in His eternal harmony.

vi. Recitatif - Narrator

Then Jesus looked down to the places of his triumph
The gnarled trees of the Garden of Gethsemane
The golden stone of Herod's Temple
The Hall of Judgment
And the nondescript summit of the hill of Calvary:
And he blessed each of them by name
As Moses had blessed each tribe of Israel:
And he raised his arms to heaven and prayed
And, promising for one last time the Holy Spirit,
He was taken from them.

vii. Hymn - Choir & Quartet

1. (All) For all our brokenness so clear
He loved us so, he loved us dear;
When we were weak and fell asleep
He still loved us as his own sheep.

2. (SA) Love like a tapestry of care
With every colour woven there;
No thread too small to coax and tease,
No pain too slight he would not ease.

3. (TB) No hardship he would not endure,
No night too long for humble prayer;
No storm too loud nor tempter calm,
He shielded us from hurt and harm.

4. (Narrator) Ascended for The Father's aid
(Peter) O Spirit come lest prayers fade
(Mary) Complete what feels to me unmade
(Jesus) I will fulfil the words I said.

Cadenza ql

5. (All) Love was completed in his death,
His Resurrection our new start;
The Spirit's crystallising force
Will bring god's word to every heart.

viii. Choir - Dialogue

Choir 1: We bring sheathes, we bring the first fruits, the golden corn, the solid stuff of bread

Choir 2: We bring grapes, we bring the first fruits, the wine like blood, the risk of joy and death

Choir 1: We bring oil to bless

Choir 2: We bring the almonds of faithfulness

Choir 1: We bring a lamb

Choir 2: We bring a pair of doves

Choir 1: Lamb for The Temple
Offering for slaughter
The sweet smoke

Choir 2: Doves for the offering of the poor folk

All: Sing of the almond of faithfulness
Sing of the olive of familiar bitterness
Sing of the harvest of the first fruits.

ix. Aria - Mary

A1. All of the time I waited,
All of the time I cried;
Crowded with those who hated,
Empty the hour you died:
O Jesus, son, you came to save
But left me in this living grave.

A2. Pierced by Simeon's warning,
Pierced by every nail;
Struck by the early triumph,
Struck by your will to fail:
O Jesus, son, with so much given
You left me when you entered heaven.

A3. Strong in the face of weakness,
Weak in the face of power;
Days when you were victorious,
Lost in that final hour:
O Jesus, son, I need your love
But you are living far above.

A4. Rose in a field of thistles,
Crowned with your own blood thorn;
Flesh for a world in torment,
My flesh so sharply torn:
O Jesus, son, I should feel free
But languish in your agony.

B. Through the tears I followed in the crowd
Through the taunts I struggled to be proud
And saw your smile in the rain
And saw it flicker through the pain
O Jesus, son, I pray to see it again:

A5. Send down the Holy Spirit,
Send down the power of grace;
Help us to face the future
Clear in your wounded face:
O Jesus may the Spirit come
Then take me to our heavenly home.

x. Recitatif - Narrator

Then a mighty wind blew through the room where they were staying
And their hearts were enflamed with the power of love;
And they burst out of their silent prayer saying
The Holy Spirit has come!

And they knew in the tongues of flame the whole of their mission,
The seamless story of our salvation:
From the crib to the cross
From the tree to the tomb
From Adam to Emmaus
From Eden to Gethsemane
From the Red Sea to Calvary
From the Holy of Holies to the Upper room

Manna and Eucharist
The broken bread the healing Spirit.

xi. Recitatif & Responses Response - Peter and The Crowd

Choir 1: We bring the first fruits
Bread of the harvest

Choir 2: We bring the first fruits
Fruit of the vine

repeat as required

Peter: breaks in and sings over choirs
Friends and brothers, Jews and Greeks
Romans, Capedocians, Parthians and Medes
Pilgrims from Asia and Libya, Egypt, Italy and France
I proclaim the good news of Christ Jesus!

Choir 1: We bring the first fruits
Bread of the harvest

Choir 2: We bring the first fruits
Fruit of the vine

Peter: I proclaim that Jesus is Lord
I proclaim that he whom you nailed to the tree
Has saved us.
We are the first fruits
Of his salvation.

Choir 1: Ich glaube, Credo, I believe
Je croi la gloire de Jesu et vincue

Choir 2: Drunk! Drunk before the second watch! Drunk!

Choir 1: We hear them speaking in our own tongues
We recognise the words from our old songs
We hear the prophets in their address
We feel the guilt of our unfaithfulness.

Choir 2: Drunk! Drunk! Drunk!
Drunk as the prophets running naked
Wild as Isaiah, mad as Ezekiel, sad as Jeremiah
Madmen from Galilee
Claiming to set us free
Away with them!

Choir 1: We hear strange voices of Galilee
Men from the library at Alexandria
Fishermen reciting Isaiah
Fishermen reading from Homer
Fishermen who speak in Eclogues.

Peter: Know you all that this Jesus whom you crucified

Choir 2: Drunk! Drunk! Drunk! Full of the first fruits
Bursting with new wine

Peter: Know you that this Jesus whom you crucified
Is our savour
We are the first fruits

Choir 1: We hear him!
We believe

Choir 2: Drunk Galilean ruffians down from the North
Drunken supporters of Galilee United

Peter: Whom you crucified has been raised from the dead
And has sent his spirit among us
So that God's word may be proclaimed anew.

Choir 1: We believe
We believe.

xii. Aria - Mary


O genius of bliss that so supplied
Our Holy Spirit, soul of loving art,
With every tender gift of womanhood contrived
To comfort and sustain each failing heart:

What God Our Parent wrought
Was in our saviour sealed
And of their mutual love the spirit caught
Her mission to make God in us revealed.

xiii. Hymn with Soloists

1. (Peter) That Jesus you nailed to a tree
Is here with us in Spirit now
The flowering of all prophesy
engarlanding the victor's brow.

2. (SA) A baby in a manger laid
A king of shepherds god of kings
Emptied of godhead he was made
That he might feel our suffering.

3. (TB) Tried, tortured, flayed, crowned, nailed and pierced,
A mocking plaque, a toss of dice;
We thought our gentle Lord had failed,
Misunderstood his sacrifice.

Mary sings over Verse 4

Mary: O Jesus, Son, I come,
O Jesus, son, my arms are open wide;
I hear the Spirit calling me
To be forever at your side.

4. (All) Wonders in heaven and earth abound,
The kingdom he proclaimed is here;
All lost in Adam now are found,
New life to all; death holds no fear.

Peter sings over verse 5

Peter: Water of life
Fire of the spirit
Fill us with grace
Beyond all limit.

5. (all) O force that makes the waters flow
O fire that glows all gloom away
O strength of grace no limits know
The Spirit is with us today.

6. (All) All glory to The Father be
All glory to the risen son
All glory to our strength come down
All glory to the three in one.

xiv. Aria - Narrator

1. My saviour lives.
He lives in me if I will hear his voice.
Love laid so wide
It makes me safe in loving him by choice:
O Love that soars
In humble me so high,
In risking choice
I know I cannot die.

2. My saviour lives.
He lives in me if I will bear his cross.
Pain felt so deep
It makes me ache in living with his loss:
O pain that grieves
In humble me so still,
In bearing him
I know I do his will.

3. My saviour lives.
He lives in me if I will choose the way
With love so wide
It makes me safe in loving him always:
O Love that lifts,
When I will surely fail,
Into his arms
Where his love will prevail.

xv. Hymn - Choir

1. The olive has grown ripe beneath the sun,
Not bitter now but warning still of woe,
Our food of oil and sadness in alloy
Anointing pilgrims on their joyful way.

2. The bread of life is broken in our hearts.
It feeds and heals but still it leaves a blade
Which tells us of created brokenness
Enabling choice which is why we were made.

3. The wine of life flows freely in our veins
That we may love, aspiring in defeat
To risk our saviour's risk which now sustains
Life in the Spirit, making us complete.

4. O life of bread and wine in Eucharist,
O metaphor of risk, fullness of choice;
O endless love of Trinity in One,
O heavenly prospect, all the world Rejoice!

5. O heavenly force that makes the waters flow
O Sacred fire that glows all gloom away
O boundless strength of grace no limits know
Your Spirit is with us, thank God we pray.