The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hymns
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Latter-day Saint hymns come from many sources and there have been numerous hymn books printed within the Latter Day Saint movement since its inception in 1830. The singing of hymns has always been an important part of the history and worship in the Latter Day Saint movement, including its largest component, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). This article specifically addresses hymns of the LDS Church.
Early LDS Hymns
And it shall be given thee, also, to make a selection of sacred hymns, as it shall be given thee, which is pleasing unto me, to be had in my church. For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.
Initially, it seems that this revelation was interpreted to mean that Emma Smith was commanded to select which hymns were appropriate for use in the worship services of Latter Day Saints and not necessarily to compile a hymnbook. Due in part to this ambiguity in the revelation and in part to persecutions and the constant uprooting of the church in those early days, she was not able to compile a hymnbook for several years. However, in the meantime, other followers continued to write, arrange, and collect hymns.
The first LDS hymns were published by W.W. Phelps in June, 1832 in Independence, Missouri. These appeared as text only (no music) in The Evening and the Morning Star, the church's semimonthly newspaper. Many of these lyrics were written by Phelps, while others were borrowed from various Protestant sources and edited by Phelps. The first of these hymns published by Phelps was "What fair one is this".
On July 20, 1833, a mob destroyed the church's printing office in Independence, and the publication of the Star was moved to Kirtland, Ohio – the headquarters of the church at that time. In December, 1834, The Evening and the Morning Star was replaced by a new publication: The Messenger and Advocate. Phelps continued to write and collect hymn texts, with assistance from Frederick G. Williams and others.
On September 14, 1835, at a meeting of the High Council and the Presidency at Kirtland, Emma Smith was again counseled to begin compiling a hymnbook in a joint effort with William W. Phelps:
It was further decided that Sister Emma Smith proceed to make a selection of Sacred Hymns, according to the revelation; and that President W.W. Phelps be appointed to revise and arrange them for printing.
It appears that final publication of the new hymnal may have been pushed back into early 1836. The book is tiny - just 3" by 41⁄2" in size. An indication of the poverty of the church members in Kirtland at that time is that the hymnal was published in "sexadecimal" form, the least expensive publishing format for books in those days: sixteen pages were printed on both sides of a single sheet, which was then folded, cut, and sewn into the leather binding. Thus, the entire hymnbook could be printed on just four large sheets of paper. The completed hymnal contained ninety hymns, but only the words were included. As a result, today it is difficult to determine which tunes were used with many of the hymn texts.
Many of the hymns which had previously been published in The Evening and the Morning Star were inserted into the 1835 hymnal as a block, almost exactly in the same order as their earlier publication. Eleven of the hymns were also published in The Messenger and Advocate between December 1834 and January 1836:
|E&MS||Date||1835 Number||M&A||Date||1835 Number|
|1:1||Jun 1832||3, 4, 5, 6, 10||1:3||Dec 1834||63|
|1:3||Aug 1832||7, 8, 9||1:9||Jun 1835||23, 24|
|1:4||Sept 1832||11, 12||1:10||Jul 1835||41, 57|
|1:5||Oct 1832||13, 14||1:11||Aug 1835||43|
|1:6||Nov 1832||15||1:13||Oct 1835||26, 28|
|1:9||Feb 1833||16,17||1:14||Nov 1835||65|
|1:10||Mar 1833||18||2:16||Jan 1836||71, 90|
|2:13||Jun 1833||20, 21|
|2:19||Apr 1834||30, 31, 32|
Although the book was printed in 1836, it is still referred to as the "1835 hymnal" because of the publication date on the title page. The Kirtland printing of the LDS hymnbook was probably very small - perhaps 500 copies at most. Today, original copies of this hymnbook are extremely rare; less than a dozen are known to exist. On December 5, 2006 an original 1835 LDS hymnal was sold at Christie's Auction House in New York City for $273,600.
In Nauvoo, in 1841, Emma Smith published an expanded version of the 1835 hymnal. The new hymnal contained 304 hymns (340 pages before the index), still in words-only format. Of these, 77 hymns had been included in the 1835 hymnbook. Many of the hymns included in the 1841 hymnal were more focused on grace, the blood of Christ, and the cross than other LDS hymn collections. Examples include "Amazing Grace", "Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing", and "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross". After the succession crisis in the early Latter Day Saint movement following Joseph Smith's death, this hymnal was largely ignored in favor of the Manchester hymnal by those church members who followed the Quorum of the Twelve and moved to Utah. In the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, however, the opposite was true.
In 1840, Brigham Young, Parley P. Pratt and John Taylor published a words-only hymnal for the church in Manchester, England entitled A Collection of Sacred Hymns for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Europe. This "Manchester Hymnal", or "Small Hymnal", as it came to be called, was by far the longest-lived of all LDS hymnals, with 25 editions published between 1840 and 1912. Over the years, publication of this hymnal moved from Manchester to Liverpool, and finally to Salt Lake City. As more hymns were added, the book grew from 323 pages in 1840 to 456 pages in the 1905 edition. However, it was still a words-only hymnal; the tunes were sung from memory.
Unofficial LDS hymnbooks with music
Early hymnbooks published by the LDS church were text-only, with the tunes selected from memory or from tune books. Two unofficial hymnbooks in the 1840s and 1850s began the process of including music in LDS hymnals.
In 1844, G. B. Gardner and Jesse C. Little published a small hymnal in Bellows Falls, Vermont. This unofficial hymnbook is unique in early LDS history, because it was the first Latter-day Saint hymnal to include music with the words. This hymnal includes tunes for 18 of the 90 hymns found in the 1835 hymnbook. In addition, another 17 hymns were printed without music. Hymn number one in this hymnal, "The Spirit of God", may be the very first LDS hymn ever published with musical notation.
The second LDS hymnbook with music was John Tullidge's Latter Day Saints' Psalmody, published in 1857. This collection included music for LDS hymns like “Oh, My Father,” “Praise to the Man” and “An Angel from on High,” complete with piano accompaniment. Tullidge felt that many of the pairings of tune with hymns used in LDS meetings were poorly made and that the “freshness and vigor” of their spirit demanded better music for use in “praise for full grateful hearts.”
The Latter-day Saints' Psalmody
The first official LDS hymnbook to include music was The Latter-day Saints' Psalmody, published in 1889. At that time, many of the familiar LDS Church's hymns that are sung today were finally fixed in place - but not with the tunes that were sung back in 1835.
The Psalmody was a conscious effort by church leaders to develop a hymn style of their own. Budding composers in the church were encouraged to submit new tunes to fit the new and old lyrics. Many Latter-day Saint hymns that had been published in the previous decades in periodicals like the Utah Magazine, the Utah Musical Times, the Utah Musical Bouquet, and the Juvenile Instructor were included. Some tunes were also adopted from non-LDS sources, such as classical composers like Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Mendelssohn, and Rossini. Most of the old tunes were cast aside without ever having been committed to print, and the memory of them was quickly lost.
The Psalmody was intended to be a supplement to the "Manchester Hymnal". Each hymn in the Psalmody was cross-referenced by page number to the "Manchester Hymnal" and only used a few verses of the full hymn text.
In many respects, the Latter-day Saints' Psalmody represented a high-water mark in LDS hymnody. By today's standards many of the hymns are quite challenging, even for choirs, let alone congregational singing. They were very high-pitched, sometimes ascending above the staff to a high g' or a' in the soprano parts. The tenor parts were written on a separate staff above the soprano and alto lines, making accompaniment difficult. Still, the 330 hymns in the 1889 Psalmody show tremendous skill in composition and originality. Ninety-five of them are still in use in the 1985 LDS hymnal, including these standards:
- "The Morning Breaks, the Shadows Flee"
- "High on the Mountain Top"
- "An Angel From on High"
- "Awake, Ye Saints of God, Awake"
- "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet"
- "Come, Listen to a Prophet's Voice"
About half of the new hymn tunes that were composed for the Psalmody were written by members of the Church Music Committee, which included Evan Stephens, George Careless, Ebenezer Beesley, Joseph J. Daynes, and Thomas C. Griggs. These men were accomplished musicians, composers, and Mormon Tabernacle Choir conductors. Many of their Psalmody hymn tunes have a pronounced "instrumental" feel, as if they were more suited for organ performance than choir or congregational singing.
1908 Songs of Zion
In 1908, nine LDS Church mission presidents collaborated to produce a more simple hymnal with music and text. At the time, there were several songbooks and hymnbooks in use in Utah, including the Latter-day Saints' Psalmody, the Manchester Hymnal, the Deseret Sunday School Union Songbooks, Primary hymnbooks for children, etc. The intent of the mission presidents was to provide unity, prevent confusion and reduce the cost of stocking multiple hymnbooks by compiling favorite songs and hymns in one book. It was published in Chicago by the Northern States Mission and contained 246 gospel hymns such as "Do What Is Right," and "Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel." The 1918 edition contained 269 songs. It was the most popular and fastest selling LDS hymnbook up to that time. There were 12 printings between 1908 and 1925.
1909 Deseret Sunday School Songs
Before correlation, the church auxiliaries were free to publish their own curricula and hymnbooks. The Deseret Sunday School Union published a series of songbooks beginning in the late 1884. Many of the songs in these early Sunday School songbooks were intended for use with youth and followed the "gospel song" style of bouncy rhythms, repeated pitches, a verse-chorus pattern, melodramatic metaphor, and a tendency to focus on exhortation to the singers. These songbooks were extremely popular and introduced such favorites as "Oh, how lovely was the morning", "Improve the shining moments", and "Choose the right".
A new edition of the Sunday School songbook entitled Deseret Sunday School Songs was published in 1909. Following the format of the Songs of Zion hymnbook, it was expanded and printed with two-staff notation instead of the three-staff format of the Psalmody. Deseret Sunday School Songs outlasted the Psalmody, being used in the LDS Church until 1948. It was much more popular because the tunes were more "singable". Of the 295 hymns in the Deseret Sunday School Songs, 120 still appear in the 1985 Latter-day Saint hymnal.
For a brief period in the early 1900s, there were four different hymnbooks in use in the LDS Church:
- The Manchester hymnal
- The Latter-day Saints' Psalmody
- Songs of Zion
- Deseret Sunday School Songs
In 1927, the church's Music Committee decided to combine the best of the first three of these hymnals into one volume. The result was called Latter-day Saint Hymns, though it was commonly called "the green hymnbook". It contained 419 hymns, of which 128 still survive in the church's 1985 hymnal. Although it tried to incorporate some aspects of the Songs of Zion and the Deseret Sunday School Songs, it still heavily emphasized difficult and elaborate hymns for use in choirs and was never as popular as the books it was meant to replace. The Deseret Sunday School Songs continued as a separate hymnal until 1948 because it was used in Sunday School opening exercises.
By December 1928, a slightly revised version of the 1927 hymnal was released. The 1928 edition included 421 hymns, 5 of which were new. The differences between the 1927 and 1928 editions were as follows:
|1927 Hymns||No.||1928 Hymns||No.|
|Lord, Thou Wilt Hear Me||132||God be With You||132|
|An Angel From on High||152||There is a Green Hill Far Away||152|
|Jehova||392||In Thy Temple Great Jehovah||392|
|Have Faith, Ye Saints||402||Blessed Are They That Have Faith||402|
|Freedom Waves Her Joyous Pinions||416||Have I Done Any Good In the World Today?||416|
|Dark the Battle Clouds are Closing||418||Sometime We'll Understand||418|
|An Angel From On High||420|
|God Of Our Fathers||421|
In 1948, a new hymnbook that replaced both the 'Latter-day Saint Hymns' (1927 hymnbook) and the Deseret Sunday School Songs was published under the title Hymns: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The 1948 edition included 387 hymns.
While previous LDS hymnbooks focused on emphasizing music and texts written by Latter-day Saints, the committee that compiled this hymnbook turned more to classical Protestant sources for inspiration. They were also influenced by the research and writings of Sterling Wheelwright, who felt that LDS hymnals were losing their relevance through focusing on upbeat but trivial hymns rather than intimate and meditative ones. Overall, they sought to publish a hymnbook with a "better standard of musical expression" than previous LDS hymnals.
Problems with binding and complaints from church leaders about the loss of some gospel songs led to the Church Music Committee issuing a slightly revised version in 1950. The differences between the 1948 and 1950 editions were as follows:
|1948 Hymns||No.||1950 Hymns||No.|
|Angels from the Realms of Glory||5||As swiftly my days go out on the wing||5|
|Cease, ye fond parents, cease to weep||9||In hymns of praise||9|
|Come, O thou King of kings||19||Come along, come along||19|
|Come, labor on||20||Come, O thou King of kings||20|
|From all that dwell below the skies||38||Each cooing dove||38|
|Father of light||39||The first Noel||39|
|Good Christian men, rejoice||52||From all that dwell below the skies||52|
|Hail to the brightness of Zion's glad morning||57||Guide us, O Thou great Jehovah||57|
|Hark! The evening hymn is stealing||58||Have I done any good in the world today||58|
|I heard the bells on Christmas Day||72||There is a land whose sunny vales||72|
|I need thee every hour||78||Beautiful Zion, built above||78|
|Mid pleasures and palaces||107||For our devotions, Father||107|
|Mine eyes have seen the glory||109||Precious Savior, dear Redeemer||109|
|Lead me into life eternal||110||Choose the right||110|
|O Lord responsive to thy call||138||O my Father, thou that dwellest||138|
|There is beauty all around||170||Dearest children, God is near you||170|
|I wander through the stilly night||171||Now to heaven our prayer||171|
|We gather together||182||Hail to the brightness of Zion's glad morning||182|
|Though in the outward Church below||183||Awake! O ye people, the Savior is coming||183|
|Rejoice, ye pure in heart||185||Mid pleasures and palaces||185|
|Sometime we'll understand||267||Not now, but in the coming years||267|
|Proud? yes, of our home||278||Rest, rest for the weary soul||278|
|Sometime, somewhere||286||Unanswered yet? the prayer||286|
|Thou dost not weep, to weep alone||294||I wander through the stilly night||294|
|Ye simple souls who stray||298||The Lord imparted from above||298|
|Sometime we'll understand||334||Not now, but in the coming years||334|
|Rock of Ages||338||Come, lay his books and papers by||338|
|Who are these arrayed in white||343||Reverently and meekly now||343|
In 1960, two more hymns were added to the hymnal:
|FIRST LINE||HYMN NUMBER|
|Who's On the Lord's Side?||388|
|This Earth Was Once a Garden Place||389|
In 1985, the church issued a new hymn book titled Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The English edition contains 341 hymns.
Some new hymns were placed in this book, which had not been published by the worldwide church up until this time, such as "Called to Serve" and "How Great Thou Art," as well as familiar songs that have been used in the Primary such as "I Am a Child of God," "Teach Me To Walk In The Light," and "Families Can Be Together Forever."
Others were left out of the book. Committee members have rarely given specific reasons for leaving out any particular hymn, usually saying that the Holy Spirit was followed in the selection and there were too many hymns to be included into one book. For example, some of the hymns were about Utah and its mountains, which, while meaningful to church members living there, would not be as appealing to a worldwide church. Others such as "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" were thought to have fallen into disuse, but were missed by some members.
Of the ninety hymns included in the 1835 edition, twenty-six still survive in some form in the current 1985 LDS hymnal.
This 1985 hymnal was reprinted in 1998 and 2002 with some modifications to renew copyrights, new copyright dates, and other items such as composer death dates.
Numerous translations have been made of the 1985 LDS hymnal for use around the world. The translated hymnbooks are generally about 200 hymns in size, with approximately 100 hymns that are required to be included in all LDS hymnals, 50 chosen from a suggested list in the English hymnbook, and 50 that are left open to the translation committee to choose. Usually the last 50 are mostly chosen from the English hymnbook with some differences in Christmas music, national anthems, a few hymns from previous editions of LDS hymnals that are not in the current English edition, and occasionally other hymns popular in the relevant linguistic regions. In total, there are 209 additional hymns found only in various non-English language editions.
New core hymnbook
In June 2018, the LDS Church announced that it would be compiling a new hymnal and children's songbook. Specific goals of the new books are to create unity in hymn numbers around the world, provide opportunities to include more hymns and songs originating in languages other than English, fill doctrinal gaps, resolve copyright issues from foreign translation restrictions, improve the quality of translations, and provide more consistent digital access to the songs and hymns.
List of LDS hymnals published, 1835–2002
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Below is a list of all known English-language LDS hymnals published since 1835, both "official" and unofficial.
|Title||Edition/Printing||Date||Location||Compiler||Number of Hymns|
|A Collection of Sacred Hymns||1835||Kirtland, USA||Emma Smith, WW Phelps||90|
|1838||NYC?, USA||David W. Rogers||90|
|1839||East?, USA||Benjamin C Ellsworth||114|
|Manchester Hymnal||1||1840||Manchester, England||Parley P. Pratt, BY, JT||271|
|Manchester Hymnal||2||1841||Manchester, England||Parley P. Pratt, BY, JT||271|
|A Collection of Sacred Hymns||1841||Nauvoo, USA||Emma Smith||304|
|1841||East?, Canada||Christ. Merkley||19|
|1843||Boston, USA||John Hardy (Unofficial)||155|
|Manchester Hymnal||3||1843||Manchester, England||Hiram Clark, Thos Ward||271|
|A Collection of Sacred Hymns||1844||Bellow Falls, VT, USA||J.C. Little, G.B. Gardner||47|
|Manchester Hymnal||4||1844||Liverpool, England||Reuben Hedlock, T. Ward||272|
|1845||Pittsburg, USA||Sidney Rigdon||182|
|1845||Bellow Falls, VT, USA||Charles A. Adams||106|
|Manchester Hymnal||5||1846||Liverpool, England||F.D. Richards, O. Spencer||?|
|Manchester Hymnal||6||1847/8||Liverpool, England||Orson Spencer||283|
|Manchester Hymnal||7||1848||Liverpool, England||Orson Pratt||?|
|Manchester Hymnal||8||1849||Liverpool, England||Orson Pratt||283|
|Manchester Hymnal||9||1851||Liverpool, England||Franklin D. Richards||296|
|1853||England||John Lyon (Unofficial)||8|
|Manchester Hymnal||10||1854||Liverpool, England||Orson Pratt||296|
|Manchester Hymnal||11||1856||Liverpool, England||Franklin D. Richards||322|
|1857||Liverpool, England||John E Tullidge||38|
|Manchester Hymnal||12||1863||Liverpool, England||George Q. Cannon||331|
|Manchester Hymnal||13||1869||Liverpool, England||Albert Carrington||330|
|Manchester Hymnal||14||1871||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||George Q. Cannon||345|
|Manchester Hymnal||15||1871||Liverpool, England||Albert Carrington||344|
|Manchester Hymnal||16||1877 (1887)||Liverpool, England (USA)||Franklin D. Richards||344|
|Manchester Hymnal||17||1883||Salt Lake City, UT, England||345|
|Manchester Hymnal||18||1884||Liverpool, England||John Henry Smith||345|
|Manchester Hymnal||19||1889||Liverpool, England||George Teasdale||352|
|Manchester Hymnal||20||1890||Liverpool, England||George Teasdale||356|
|Manchester Hymnal||20||1891||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||369|
|Manchester Hymnal||21||1894||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||370|
|Manchester Hymnal||22||1897||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||370|
|Manchester Hymnal||23||1899||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||370|
|Manchester Hymnal||24||1905||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||383|
|Manchester Hymnal||25||1912||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||385|
|The Songs of Zion||Northern States Mission||1908||Chicago, IL USA||German E Ellisworth||246|
|The Songs of Zion||9 Missions||1918||Independence, MO USA||Joseph F Smith||269|
|The Songs of Zion||9 + Canadian and Hawaiian Missions||1919?||Independence, MO USA||Joseph F Smith||269|
|The Songs of Zion||11 + North-Central States Mission||1925?||Independence, MO USA||Joseph F Smith||269|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||1||1889||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||Careless, Beesley, Daynes, Stephens, Griggs||330|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||2||1896||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||354|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||3||1906||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||366|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||4||1908||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||367|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||5||1912||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||367|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||6||1915||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||367|
|Latter-day Saints' Psalmody||7||1920||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||367|
|Latter-day Saint Hymns||November 1927||1927||Independence, MO||General Church Music Committee||419|
|Latter-day Saint Hymns||Unmarked||1927||Independence, MO||General Church Music Committee||419|
|Latter-day Saint Hymns||December 1928||1928||Independence, MO||General Church Music Committee||421|
|Latter-day Saint Hymns||July 1936||1936||Independence, MO||General Church Music Committee||421|
|Latter-day Saint Hymns||March 1940||1940||Independence, MO||General Church Music Committee||421|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||1||1948||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||2||1950||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||3||1952||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||6||1954||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||7||1954||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||8||1955||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||9||1956||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||10||1956||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||11||1957||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||12||1958||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||387|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||14||1960||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||15||1961||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||16||1961||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||17||1962||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||18||1964||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||19||1964||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||21||1966||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||22||1966||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||23||1967||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||24||1968||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||25||1968||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||26||1969||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||27||1970||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||28||1971||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||29||1972||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||30||1972||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||31||1973||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||32||1973||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||33||1974||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||34||1975||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||35||1976||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||Unmarked||1978||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||Unmarked||1979||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns, Church of Jesus Christ||Unmarked||Unmarked (1980-1984?)||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||389|
|Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ||1||1985||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||341|
|Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ||2||1998||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||341|
|Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ||3||2002||Salt Lake City, UT, USA||General Church Music Committee||341|
Below is a sampling of some of the LDS hymns that are no longer included in the 1985 hymn book.
- "All Hail the Glorious Day"
- "Arise, My Soul, Arise"
- "As Swiftly My days Go Out On the Wing"
- "Author of Faith, Eternal Word"
- "Awake! O Ye People, the Savior is Coming;" words by W.W. Phelps
- "Beautiful Zion for Me" by Charles W. Penrose
- "Blessed Are They That Have the Faith"
- "Break Forth, O Beauteous Heavenly Light"
- "Bring, Heavy Heart, Your Grief to Me"
- "Captain of Israel's Host"
- "Come All Ye Saints and Sing His Praise" by Lorin F. Wheelwright
- "Come, Dearest Lord"
- "Come, Go With Me, Beyond the Sea"
- "Come, Hail the Cause of Zion's Youth"
- "Come, Lay His Books and Papers By" (a song written to the memory of Karl G. Maeser)
- "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing"
- "Down by the River's Verdant Side"
- "Each Cooing Dove"
- "Farewell, All Earthly Honors"
- "For Our Devotions, Father"
- "Give Us Room That We May Dwell"
- "Glory Be to God in the Highest"
- "Hark! Listen to the Trumpeters"
- "Hark, Ten Thousand Thousand Voices"
- "Hushed Was the Evening Hymn"
- "I'll Praise My Maker While I've Breath" by Isaac Watts
- "Land of the Mountains High" by Evan Stephens (this song is also known as Utah, We Love Thee; it was the official state song of the State of Utah for many years, until it was replaced as such by Utah…This Is The Place, at which time it was redesignated as the official state hymn)
- "Let Each Man Learn to Know Himself"
- "Lift Thine Eyes to the Mountains"
- "Lo! On the Water's Brink We Stand"
- "Lord of All Being, Throned Afar" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
- "Lord, Thou Wilt Hear Me" by Isaac Watts
- "M.I.A., We Hail Thee"
- "'Mid Pleasures and Palaces"
- "Not Now, But in the Coming Years"
- "O Awake! My Slumbering Minstrel" words by Eliza R. Snow
- "O Happy Homes Among the Hills"
- "O Happy Home! O Blest Abode"
- "O'er the Gloomy Hills of Darkness"
- "Oh Give Me Back My Prophet Dear" (this song laments the deaths of Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum), written by John Taylor with music by George Careless
- "On the Mountain's Top Appearing"
- "One Sweetly Solemn Thought"
- "Rest, Rest for the Weary Soul"
- "Sacred the Place of Prayer and Song" by Evan Stephens
- "Shall We Meet Beyond the River"
- "Sister, Thou Wast Mild and Lovely" words by Samuel F. Smith
- "Stars of Morning, Shout for Joy"
- "Sweet Is the Hour When Thus We Meet" by Evan Stephens
- "Take Courage, Saints, and Faint Not by the Way"
- "There is a Land Whose Sunny Vales" (a song about Utah)
- "The Seer, Joseph, The Seer" words by John Taylor
- "Think Not, When You Gather to Zion" words by Eliza R. Snow
- "The Lord Imparted from Above" (this song is about the Word of Wisdom; words by Eliza R. Snow and music by George Careless)
- "Thou Dost Not Weep Alone" words by Eliza R. Snow
- "Though in the Outward Church Below"
- "Unanswered Yet? The Prayer"
- "Up! Arouse Thee, O Beautiful Zion"
- "When Christ Was Born in Bethlehem" words by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
- "When Dark and Drear the Skies Appear"
- "When First the Glorious Light of Truth" words by William Clayton
- "We'll Sing the Songs of Zion"
- "What Voice Salutes the Startled Ear?"
- "Ye Children of Our God" words by Parley P. Pratt
- "Ye Chosen Twelve, To You are Given" words by Parley P. Pratt
Changes in Hymn Tunes
Early LDS hymnbooks had no tunes, and the chorister was expected to select a tune that matched the meter and mood of the hymn text. It was not always expected that the congregation sing the text with the same tune each time. Even after music was printed with the hymn texts, however, the tunes used with each hymn text have changed from time to time in Latter-day Saint hymnbooks. For example, of the twenty-six hymns in the 1985 hymnal that were included in the 1835 hymnbook, only five of the original hymns are probably still sung to their original tunes. These are:
|FIRST LINE||HYMN NUMBER|
|Redeemer of Israel||(1835 #6; 1985 #6)|
|Joy to the World||(1835 #15; 1985 #201)|
|This Earth Was Once a Garden Place||(1835 #23; 1985 #49)|
|From Greenland's Icy Mountains||(1835 #74; 1985 #268)|
|O God! Our Help in Ages Past||(1835 #86; 1985 #31)|
Even among these, "Joy to the World" has been included in Latter-day Saint hymnbooks with at least two different tunes over the years. Some examples of iconic Latter-day Saint hymns that are sung to different hymn tunes than they were originally include "Praise to the Man," "An Angel From on High," and "If You Could Hie to Kolob".
Revivals of the old tunes in recordings of traditional Mormon hymns have generated interest and appreciation, as in the "Return to Nauvoo" collection by the FiddleSticks group and the "Parley P Pratt" collection by Roger Hoffman.
Many of the LDS Church's hymns are well known traditional Christian hymns; others deal with items of doctrine unique to the church's doctrine, such as the pre-mortal existence, modern church prophets, and the Book of Mormon. Others draw their subject matter from the church's history, including themes such as the Restoration and pioneer experiences. Some of the unique LDS hymns such as "Come, Come, Ye Saints" are gaining popularity in the repertoires of other Christian choirs.
The Primary has its own songs, included in the Children's Songbook. Some of these songs are gaining popularity with adults as well.
Some other songs which are occasionally sung by choirs, (though usually not by the whole congregation in a meeting) include "O Divine Redeemer" and the Christmas carol "O Holy Night".
Other hymns continue to be written by Latter-day Saints, some of which have grown in popularity. For example, "Faith in Every Footstep", a song specifically written for the 150th anniversary of the Mormon pioneers' journey, is sung occasionally in LDS sacrament meetings and has been included in some translations of the 1985 LDS hymnbook. "If the Savior Stood Beside Me" was another new hymn that is among the most-requested hymns in a survey about the forthcoming hymnbook.
Congregations also sing patriotic hymns of their respective countries, as they may or may not be included in the language-specific edition of the hymn book.
- Doctrine and Covenants 25:11-12. Compare "Revelation, July 1830–C [D&C 25]," p. 35, The Joseph Smith Papers, accessed May 20, 2019
- See Michael Hicks, Mormonism and Music: A History (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1989), 10
- History of the Church Vol. II p. 273. See also “Minutes, 30 April 1832,” p. 26, The Joseph Smith Papers, accessed September 21, 2017, http://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/minutes-30-april-1832/2
- "1835 hymnal sold at auction for $273,600". Deseret News. 2006-12-06. Retrieved 2012-01-27.
- See Hicks, Michael (2012) “Emma Smith’s 1841 Hymnbook,” Journal of Book of Mormon Studies: Vol. 21: No. 1 , Article 3. Available at: https://scholarsarchive.byu.edu/jbms/vol21/iss1/3. See also Richard Clothier, 150 Years of Song: Hymnody in the Reorganization, 1860-2010 (Independence, MO: Herald Publishing House), 8, 19
- "Book of Mormon sells for $180,000". Deseret News. 2007-03-23. Retrieved 2012-01-27.
- Cited in Shane Chism, A Selection of Early Mormon Hymnbooks (Lulu.com, 2011), 233.
- see Hicks, Mormonism and Music, 124.
- Mormon Tabernacle Choir Organist Alexander Schreiner noted that the 1927 hymnal “was stronger in music for choirs than for congregation." See Alexander Schreiner “Guidelines for Writing Latter-day Hymns,” Ensign April 1973. https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1973/04/guidelines-for-writing-latter-day-hymns?lang=eng.
- Harold B. Lee et al. to First Presidency, 25 October 1944, CMC Files 1939-49.
- See Michael Hicks, Mormonism and Music: A History (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1989), 135
- Tracy Cannon to G. W. Richards, 19 October 1945, CMD General Files, HDC.
- See Catherine Reese Newton, “Sing, sing, ye Saints—Mormon hymnbook marks 30 years of praising God in song,” Salt Lake Tribune, 2 October 2015, accessed 5 March 2019, https://archive.sltrib.com/article.php?id=6863967&itype=storyID
- Karen Lynn Davidson, Our Latter-day Hymns: The Stores and the Messages (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988), 1-2
- See Catherine Reese Newton, “Sing, sing, ye Saints—Mormon hymnbook marks 30 years of praising God in song,” Salt Lake Tribune, 2 October 2015, accessed 5 March 2019, https://archive.sltrib.com/article.php?id=6863967&itype=storyID; Catherine Reese Newton, “After 32 years with the same hymns, many Mormons are wishing for different songs to sing,” Salt Lake Tribune, 25 September 2017, accessed 4 March 2019, https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2017/09/25/after-32-years-with-the-same-hymns-many-mormons-are-wishing-for-different-songs-to-sing/; http://singpraises.net/statistics/sacrament-meeting; “Fine-Tuning: Church Updates Guidelines for New Hymnbook and Children’s Songbook Submissions”, MormonNewsroom.org, 9 May 2019, https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/updated-guidelines-new-hymnbook-children-songbook-submissions
- John-Charles Duffy and Hugo Olaiz, "Correlated Praise: The Development of the Spanish Hymnal", Dialogue a Journal of Mormon Thought, V. 35 N. 02 (https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V35N02_103.pdf)
- Eleanor Cain Adams, "Committees and Strategic Goals Announced for Hymnbook and Children’s Songbook Revisions", churchofjesuschrist.org, 9 May 2019 (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/church/news/committees-and-strategic-goals-announced-for-hymnbook-and-childrens-songbook-revisions?lang=eng)
- See “Church Announces Plans for New Hymnbook and Children’s Songbook,” churchofjesuschrist.org, 18 June 2018, accessed 31 September 2018, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/church/news/church-announces-plans-for-new-hymnbook-and-childrens-songbook?lang=eng
- Karen Lynn Davidson, Our Latter-day Hymns: The Stores and the Messages (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988), 6.
- See Karen Lynn Davidson, Our Latter-day Hymns: The Stories and the Messages (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988), 56, 287. For "Praise to the Man", see John Tullidge, "The Latter Day Saints' Psalmody, Liverpool, p. 38. For "An Angel From on High" see J.C. Little and G.B. Gardner, A Collection of Sacred Hymns for the Use of The Latter Day Saints, Bellows Falls: Blake and Bailey, 1844, No. 28. Available at https://archive.org/details/collectionofsacr00litt/page/54. For "If You Could Hie to Kolob", see Latter-day Saints' Psalmody, Salt Lake City, Utah: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1889, No. 525. Available at https://archive.org/stream/latterdaysaintsp00unse#page/n201/mode/2up. Some of these may even be different than the original tunes.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-04-09. Retrieved 2009-06-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Nathan Hoffman. "Parley P. Pratt's Greatest Hymns". Hoffmanhouse.com. Retrieved 2012-01-27.
- "Hymns Sung in Sacrament Meeting," SingPraises.net, accessed 5/21/19, https://singpraises.net/statistics/sacrament-meeting. "Faith in Every Footstep", SingPraises.net, https://singpraises.net/text/965/faith-in-every-footstep?lang=eng.
- “Fine-Tuning: Church Updates Guidelines for New Hymnbook and Children’s Songbook Submissions”, MormonNewsroom.org, 9 May 2019, https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/updated-guidelines-new-hymnbook-children-songbook-submissions
- Michael F. Moody, "Latter-day Saint Hymbooks, Then and Now", Ensign, September 1985
- Hymns at churchofjesuschrist.org (includes index, text, music, and free audio downloads for most hymns in 1985 LDS hymnal; some excluded for copyright reasons)
- Early Latter-day Saint Hymns
- LDS Psalmody (PDF): Scores at the International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP)
- Deseret Sunday School Songs (PDF): Scores at the International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP)
- Google Books A full view of The Songs of Zion 1908 hymnal of the Church