The Upper Room was concerned to learn of the allegations of sexual misconduct by the well-known hymnwriter, David Haas. Several women have come forward with these charges which span a number of years. As a result of these allegations, several U.S. Catholic institutions have urged their congregations not to play his music, pending investigation.
The Upper Room Worshipbook contains nine musical settings by Haas, including #20 (Holy Is Your Name), #158 (You Are Mine), #163 (Blest Are They), #172 (Dust and Ashes), #178 (Sing Your Joy), #250 (Psalm 27 - The Lord Is My Light), #275 (Psalm 51 - Create in Me), #340 (Psalm 136 - Everlasting Grace Is Yours), #422 (Water of Life).
We stand with and believe survivors of sexual abuse. Following the guidance of United Methodism’s founder, John Wesley, who counseled all of us to “do no harm,” we encourage congregations to prayerfully consider whether to use music by this hymnwriter and whether to do so would do harm by activating trauma in survivors of abuse. We ask prayers for all parties involved, that God may grant healing and justice.
For help regarding sexual assault, harassment, and abuse call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE. It is free and confidential. Visit rainn.org for resources and more information.
I could not have found The Upper Room Moments of Prayer (on Facebook Live) sooner. For it is during these moments of centering spiritual practices, meditating on the words of scripture, praying with and for the world, that I find moments of transcendence, hear whispers of peace and hope, see glimpses of truth and justice, behold visions of love and beauty amid all the stark realities that are around me.”