Take, eat, this is my body,
Take, eat, broken for you.
Take, drink, blood shed for many.
I will always love you.
1. Bread of life, Cup of healing –
Open to all, not to just a few.
We come in our weakness, not in strength,
Leaving our burdens at your feet.
2. Risen Christ here with us
With the promise of new life.
Strengthen us now to walk with you,
Faithful and strong to do you will.
Words and music: © Rachael Prince
Ideas for use
Written to be sung during the celebration of Holy Communion, Rachael here takes words familiar from the service itself (the Refrain) and opens them out with two verses of response and reflection.
Though written with two vocal lines in mind, the setting works just as well with only the top line sung.
The setting also suggests the possibility of the refrain being sung by the presiding minister, other cantor or small singing group, and the congregation responding with the two verses.
Rachael Prince is a freelance musician and a local preacher in the Witney and Faringdon Methodist circuit in Oxfordshire. “Take, eat, this is my body” was first sung, in its two-part version, at an Easter Day communion service by a small choir formed for that occasion. It was one of the first word settings that Rachel had composed:
“I’m an organist and pianist at church and when we have communion services I’ve been improvising as communion is served. This tune came about and then wouldn’t leave me – so I had to write it down. And as I was playing it through some words were turning in my head…” – the beginnings of “Take, Eat”.
As a local preacher, Rachael finds her training and service preparation helpful when it comes to writing the words of hymns, but she is clear that usually it is the melodies that come to her first. In between music lessons (she teaches piano and violin – as well as singing in choirs for pleasure), she says she often finds herself sitting at the piano “fiddling around”.
Partly, perhaps, because these are quiet, personal moments, Rachael finds that it is a reflective style of music and setting that comes most naturally to her. At the same time, the words need to have resonance with her own everyday experience. “The hymns I like to sing are those that have some relevance to my own daily life – they will be reflect what’s going on for me.”