Our chosen Hymn for September, that we will sing at each service, is #1 in our Gray Hymnal, “May Nothing Evil Cross this Door.” It was written in 1923, renewed (by the author presumably) in 1951 and most likely was first included in our Hymnal in 1960.
The author was an American Poet, Louis Untermeyer. Untermeyer was born in 1885 in New York City and lived until 1977, when he died in his country house in Newton, Connecticut. He was a literary critic and editor, creating 2 large anthologies of American poetry. He translated books for people of all ages, saying “everyone loves poetry.”
UU minister, Kimberly Debus refers to this hymn as having “…a welcoming mood, simple and easy singability… I have heard (it) played too many times as a dirge. It is full of strong sentiment, it is a blessing not a demand. It is a prayer not a protest… This opening hymn is a dance–a waltz, a welcoming, loving blessing to all of the spirits who enter; the book, the congregation, the faith, life itself.”