Hana irodoru haru wo (‘Spring, symbol of hope’)

Hana irodoru haru wo (‘Spring, symbol of hope’). Mie Kamishima* (1961– ). ‘Hana irodoru haru wo’ is a unique contribution to Hymnal 21 (Sambika 21)*, the hymnal for the United Church of Christ in Japan. Written by on the subject of ‘Memorial’, it begins with a description of the each of the four seasons of life, one for each stanza: 1) spring, symbol of hope; 2) summer, symbol of brightness; 3) autumn, symbol of maturity; 4) winter, symbol of meditation. Each stanza concludes with a plea for God’s guidance at each stage of life. A literal translation of each stanza follows:  This friend in Christ lived through Spring, the season filled with flowers,singing a song of love which fulfills...

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