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Origins: Requiem: 'Pray for us, Father Romero...'

cetmst 09 Apr 09 - 07:56 AM
cetmst 14 Apr 09 - 06:18 AM
Peace 15 Apr 09 - 02:21 AM
cetmst 19 Apr 09 - 06:24 AM
Dan Schatz 19 Apr 09 - 12:34 PM
cetmst 20 Apr 09 - 05:41 AM
GUEST,liz 08 Nov 11 - 09:44 AM
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Subject: Origins: Pray For Us, Father Romero
From: cetmst
Date: 09 Apr 09 - 07:56 AM

I have a song about the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero in El Salvador, transcribed from some radio program beginning:
    It was a requiem mass he prayed that day,
    For the spirit of justice had late passed away.
    And he spoke to the people who had gathered to pray
    Just before his own blood was spilled,
    "They can kill me but the voice of justice can never be stilled"

    and ends:

    So pray for us, Father Romero,
    That soon this madness be done,
    That justice return and that we learn
    That it's not from the end of a gun.

Other verses note the murder of the four American women, the massacre of refugees crossing a river and the fact that the United States supplied the weapons used by the death squads. I can't make out all the words and do not know who wrote the song nor who sings it. The Wikipedia biography of Archbishop Romero notes songs written by Ruben Blades, Dafydd Iwan, Richard Gilpin and others but these do not seem to be what I'm looking for. I can't find Jolie Rickman's "Romero"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Pray For Us, Father Romero
From: cetmst
Date: 14 Apr 09 - 06:18 AM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: Origins: Pray For Us, Father Romero
From: Peace
Date: 15 Apr 09 - 02:21 AM

cetmst, I googled around and found nowt. Sorry. Particularly because Father Romero is one of the few people I look at as a hero.


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Subject: ADD: Requiem (Magpie)
From: cetmst
Date: 19 Apr 09 - 06:24 AM

Here are the full lyrics as I can make them out. Line breaks and punctuation are mine:

REQUIEM
Greg Artzner)


It was a requiem mass he prayed that day
For the spirit of justice had late passed away
And he spoke to the people who had gathered to pray
Just before his own blood was spilled.
"They can kill me but the voice of justice can never be stilled".

He raised the chalice high in the air
That the blood of redemption was ---- chair(?)
It was like a reed standing there.
Then a gunshot drowned out the bells.
Wine and blood were mixed on his vestments as he fell.

Then pray for us, Father Romero,
That soon this madness may be done;
That justice return and that we learn
That it's not from the end of a gun.

In the still of the night down an old farm town road
Soldiers disposed of a burdensome load.
Four shallow graves were the seed that they sowed;
Four American womwn were found
Murderd and hidden; accusations lie beneath the ground.

These were our sisters eho'd taken a stand
To work with the poor in a neighboring land
And for this they were murdered by soldiers' command
While the governments both turned away.
Had a search come too near the truth of what happened that day?

So tell me now how, good people, can you stand idly by
While the country we love donated the guns
By which so many more will die.

When refugees jumped in the river to cross
Women and children, old people were tossed,
Their loved ones, their land and their liberty lost;
Then the gunners swept down from the sky;
Hundreds were shot in the water and left there to die.

And today throughout the countryside
Bombs make no distinction among those who hide.
The death squads continue their genocide
While the world turns its eyes away
And the lifeline of arms from the north goes on day after day.

So tell me now how, good people, you can stand idly by
While the country we love donates the guns
By which so many more will die.

So pray for us, Father Romero,
That soon this madness be done,
That justice return and that we learn
That it's not from the end of a gun.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Pray For Us, Father Romero
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 19 Apr 09 - 12:34 PM

The song is called "Requiem" was written by Greg Artzner of the wonderful duo Magpie. Greg and Terry recorded it on their 1986 album If It Ain't Love. They wrote it in 1981, not long after four US Catholic missionaries doing social justice work were murdered in El Salvador. Greg centered the song around the words of Archbishop Oscar Romero, who said, "They can kill me, but the voice of justice will never be stilled."

If you ever have the chance to see Greg and Terry perform live, do not pass it up. They are two of the finest performers (and nicest people) you will ever meet.

Dan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Pray For Us, Father Romero (Requiem)
From: cetmst
Date: 20 Apr 09 - 05:41 AM

Thank you Dan Schatz. I have only a lttle of Magpie in my collection and will add to it after taxes, a new roof and big dental bills. - Charles


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Subject: RE: Origins: Requiem: 'Pray for us, Father Romero...'
From: GUEST,liz
Date: 08 Nov 11 - 09:44 AM

You gotta love the internet! I was searching for the rest of these lyrics (I, too, transcribed them from a radio program in the 1980s, but have forgotten many of the words) today, and I am so pleased to find them. The missing words in the first verse are, by the way, "The blood of redemption was for all to share..."

It's such a sad, beautiful song. Thank you so much for your help.


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