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How Far Away Is Heaven

Composer Carson P. Cooman
Text Richard Leach
SATB, keyboard
Topics Prodigal Son
2' 30" Price $1.60 (U.S.) Released 6/05
Catalog no. 420-644 Difficulty Moderately easy

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Download a review copy of this anthem

Though scored for adult voices, this anthem will be easily comprehensible to even the youngest worshippers: Each stanza of Richard Leach's text opens with a childlike question, which is answered directly in terms drawn from Christ's Parable of the Prodigal Son. The music, too, is simple and direct, so the work could conceivably serve as a sort of musical children’s sermon. But it is much more than that: with its focus on the nearness and love of God, the piece will be valuable in a variety of settings including funerals.

Anthem text
How far away is heaven,
your home, O Holy One?
The distance of a journey
made by a younger son.

With wealth his father gave him,
he went away from home;
and how far did he travel?
As far as he could go.

How near at hand is heaven,
your home, O Holy One?
Near as a father waiting
to welcome back a son.

A feast for all will welcome
the child he waits to see;
and how near is the father?
As near as he can be.

How far is heaven?
As far as lost from found.
How near at hand is heaven?
As near as found to lost;
as love whose wait and welcome
are precious past all cost.

--Richard Leach, 2001.
© 2008 Selah Publishing Co., Inc.

Download a review copy of this anthem
A .pdf (Portable Document Format) file of this publication may be downloaded so that you may review it on your computer screen or print it out and review it at your leisure (this requires that you have a copy of Adobe® Acrobat Reader® 3.0 [or later] on your computer). Click on the music below or on this link to download the entire score (of course, this is for review only, and may not be copied in any form), or get your copy of the free program Acrobat Reader by clicking on the logo below.


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