Even, Only for This Day: a hymn for this uncertain time

Even, Only for This Day
Even, Only for This Day
A new SATB or unison hymn addressing our time of uncertainty.
For a donation of any amount made via https://paypal.me/deannajazz or Venmo (preferred method) @Deanna-Witkowski, Deanna is waiving licensing fees for streaming use in your online services or virtual choirs.
Price: $1.00

“Do not depend on the hope of results.” This quote comes from a letter that Thomas Merton wrote to activist (and my Facebook friend), Jim Forest. Our worldwide reality is forcing us to truly live in the present, to take seriously Jesus’ suggestion to “not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow brings enough trouble of its own.”

In an effort to respond to this moment, I dusted off an original hymn tune that didn’t initially yield my “hoped for results” when I entered it last year in a contest that I didn’t win. At that time I’d composed the music as a setting for someone else’s text. Motivated to now write my own words, over a period of three days I composed these three verses:

1. When our hearts are filled with sadness,
when our minds are in despair,
when we pray and hear no answer,
asking why God does not care:

may we feel Love’s gaze enfold us
with a peace so wide and free.
As God weeps and shares our sorrow,
we are never left alone.

2. In our days of isolation,
in the hands we cannot touch,
as our screens show loved ones’ faces
yet still leave us wanting much:

may we find Love’s home within us
in its quiet, long embrace
stilling fear and giving comfort,
we are never left alone.

3. As Christ walks within our cities,
weeps at each deserted street,
as he suffers with the dying,
as he blesses, offering peace:

may we find Christ’s way before us
even, only for this day.
Held in mercy through this season,
we are never left alone.

Watch video of eight friends singing “Even, Only for This Day.”

For any donation above the $1 cost for the sheet music, I’m waiving licensing fees for streaming use in your online services or virtual choirs. Donations can be made via Paypal or Venmo (preferred method) @Deanna-Witkowski.


The meter of “Even, Only for This Day” and my new hymn tune, which I’m calling WATKINS, is This means that the text fits with some hymn tunes that your communities may already know, BEACH SPRING being one example (if you’re like, “what on earth is Deanna talking about?” I suggest you read this article). Here’s my arrangement of BEACH SPRING.

Lead sheet and piano score. As performed on Makes the Heart to Sing: Jazz Hymns.
Price: $3.00

If you’d like to use my text with a different tune, you are welcome to do so- again for any donation. And if you’d like a file of just the text, send me an email.

Thank you for your work. Please let me know how I can continue to be a resource for you.


Thanks to Ann Belmont, Stephen Witkowski, John DiPinto, David Keller, John McMahon, Amber Fort Salladin, and Sarah Tannehill Anderson for lending their voices.

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2 Responses to Even, Only for This Day: a hymn for this uncertain time

  1. Marilyn says:

    How lovely! And such moving lyrics – ♥♫♫♥ – thank you for this gift of song, Deanna! Stay safe!

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