“Into Your Presence” was originally written as an offertory song, but is really more apt as a reflection song owing to the nature of the lyrics. This is a moderate tempo song in C-Major, which is easy to follow. Watch the video and download the PDFs below. God bless!
Story Behind the Song:
On Palm Sunday of April 12, 1992, I was in third year college in the Philippines, and was serving every Holy Week at the parish church in my grandmother’s subdivision – BF Homes Quezon City. As was my habit for three or four years, I would stay with my paternal grandmother and assist my friends in the Bethel and Aria Choir (BAC) to sing for the various Holy Week activities. Because we had limited access to new music and new mass songs, we had a severe shortage of songs we could use for the Offertory at Mass. So I thought to myself, why not write something new?
As ever, necessity and the Holy Spirit are the mothers of invention. I set about putting a simple melody onto music notation paper and pretty much finished the song as is, in a matter of hours. I taught the BAC choir the song that very same week.
The first few lines of the song are inspired by the introductory prayer during the beginning of the Liturgy of the Eucharist:
C. Blessed are you, Lord, God of all Creation: Through your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us the bread of life.
P. Blessed be God for ever.
C. Blessed are you, Lord, God of all Creation: Through your goodness we have this wine to offer, fruit of the vine and work of human hands. It will become our spiritual drink.
P. Blessed be God for ever.
C. Pray, my sisters and brothers, that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God the almighty Father.
P. May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of God’s name, for our good, and the good of all God’s Church.
I took this as inspiration and ran with it, thinking it would be alright as an offertory song. Unfortunately immaturity and ignorance were against me. (See why below.)
Although this song was originally written for the offertory procession, I have since learned that it is not apt at all for that section of the Mass. The problem is: it focuses on what WE can offer to the Lord, instead of focusing on WHAT JESUS ALREADY SACRIFICED for us. In general, songs for offertory should be focused on the body and blood of Jesus, on His sacrifice on the cross, on His offering of Himself for our sins. It also cannot be sung for Communion since once again, the focus is more on OUR DOING instead of JESUS’ DOING.
Therefore this song is more apt as a reflection song after communion, or simply as a reflection song on the real presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.
|The Lord Jesus, present in Bread and Word.|