By Hannah Notess

Hannah Faith Notess is managing editor of Seattle Pacific University's Response magazine and the editor of Jesus Girls: True Tales of Growing Up Female and Evangelical, a collection of personal essays. Her first book of poetry, The Multitude, is now available from Southern Indiana Review Press.

  1. Given that pundits like to go on about character, and how we used to have it and now we don’t, I thought it might be interesting to go back and look at some of the Sunday-school songs Americans were using to help children grow in “character” when we were -- supposedly -- better at it. What, exactly, can we learn from these songs?

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  2. “Santa Baby, Thanks for Not Evaluating Me Based on How Many Fellas I’ve Kissed”

    “Mary, Did You Know That You Have 12 Months of Paid Family Leave?”

    “O Little Town of Bethlehem, How Many and Affordable Are Thy Health Care Choices for Women”

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  3. I first got sucked into the weird vortex of Temperance Hymns while checking some facts in a book about the history of the university where I work. The book mentioned that “the program in the closing day exercises of the first term featured children singing, ‘Saloons Must Go’ as they marched determinedly around the room for the benefit of the spectators.”

    “Is that a real song?” I wondered. (…

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