Hymns

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Overview

“Great power can come from memorizing [hymns]. To memorize a [hymn] is to forge a new friendship. It is like discovering a new individual who can help in time of need, give inspiration and comfort, and be a source of motivation for needed change.”
-Elder Richard G. Scott, The Power of Scripture

“Perhaps we do not attach enough importance to the habit of praise in our children’s devotion. Praise and thanksgiving come freely from the young heart; gladness is natural and holy, and music is a delight. The singing of hymns at home and of the hymns and canticles in church should be a special delight; and the habit of soft and reverent singing, of offering our very best in praise, should be carefully formed.”
-Charlotte Mason 3:143

Adding hymn study to your homeschool is as simple as choosing a hymn and then singing it together. It is unclear exactly which hymns Charlotte Mason used with her students, but it is safe to say they were from an Anglican hymnal. The LDS hymnal shares many hymns with the one Miss Mason would have used. For more information on hymn study, see our blog postings. The following is a list of suggested hymns that were selected to provide exposure to the best hymns from both our own hymnbook and the greater Christian world.

 

Hymn Schedule · 2018–2019

September: #134 – I Believe in Christ

October: Our Prayer to Thee (written by President Russell M. Nelson: audio accompanimentvideo)

November: #92 – For the Beauty of the Earth

December: #201 – Joy to the World OR  #210 – With Wondering Awe

January: #58 – Come, Ye Children of the Lord

February: #227 – There Is Sunshine in My Soul Today

March:#19 – We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet

April: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross (video)

May: #140 – Did You Think to Pray?

June: #251 – Behold! A Royal Army

July: #115 – Come, Ye Disconsolate

August: #274 – The Iron Rod

 

Background & History

I Need Thee Every Hour

This hymn was written by a tired mother—on a good day, of course! Here’s an excerpt of the story from Mormon Channel’s History of the Hymns podcast, quoted here: Annie Hawks [born in 1835] was the mother of three children when the hymn for which she is best known was written. Annie later wrote, “I […]

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Queen Victoria arrives at St Paul's Cathedral for her Diamond Jubilee celebrations. (Credit: Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

God of Our Fathers, Known of Old

Image credit: Hulton Archive/Getty Images In the waning days of the 19th century, the United Kingdom was the most powerful country on earth. The British Empire was at its imperial zenith. More than a quarter of the world’s population—and a portion of every continent—was under its dominion, and ruling over it all was Queen Victoria, the […]

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Be Thou My Vision

When we set about designing a hymn rotation, we hoped every once in a while we could introduce you to some of the more meaningful Christian hymns that aren’t in our hymnbook. (Don’t worry. We have a free PDF and recording of the piano accompaniment for you here.) This is one of my favorites: Be Thou […]

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Brightly Beams Our Father’s Mercy

In one of President Boyd K. Packer’s last General Conference talks, he said, “There is in our hymnbook a very old and seldom-sung hymn that has very special meaning to me.” He goes on to quote the entire text of “Brightly Beams Our Father’s Mercy”. It’s in our hymnbook arranged for men, but it is […]

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Joseph Smith’s First Prayer

George Manwaring and his family converted to the Church when he was 17 years old; then they immigrated from Cheshire, England to Utah. At only 24 years old, he had the opportunity to see C. C. A. Christiansen’s newly finished painting of the First Vision, entitled “The Vision”. This painting seems to be the first […]

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He Is Risen!

I confess that I’m going to cheat on this hymn post, for two reasons. Someone else has already done a better job with this hymn’s history than I would have, and we are busy designing a 12-year hymn rotation and it’s a lot of work. So, without further ado, I’m going to redirect you to Mormon […]

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Holy Temples on Mount Zion

Tucked away in the hymnbook, accompanied by an unassuming tune, is a poem on temples which I’d like to share with you this month. In particular, I love the last verse, so I hope you’ll try to read that one with new eyes, even if you’ve sung it before. Holy temples on Mount Zion in […]

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Learning Hymns on the Piano—A Piano Teacher’s Perspective

Learning to play the hymns is one of the main goals for many LDS pianists-in-training (or their parents, at least). As a piano teacher for over 15 years, I have learned a thing or two about how students can learn the hymns with the least amount of frustration. Your children’s piano teacher may have their […]

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On This Day of Joy and Gladness

When I think of this hymn, I can imagine the opening sequences of general conference with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing this in the background, welcoming in a happy new day of conference. Or maybe it’s in the middle of a conference session, like so: But did you know that this beautiful, cheerful hymn was […]

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I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

William Studwell wrote a bit about the history of this hymn in his book The Christmas Carol Reader: In spite of the mentions of bells and Christmas in the title, “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” is as much an antiwar song as it is a pro-Christmas song. The poetry of this renowned carol […]

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Other Resources

Maple Hill Academy’s Hymn Rotation – An alternate rotation of LDS hymns loosely structured around the AmblesideOnline hymn rotation.

Out of the Best Books blog – This site includes quotes related to hymns from LDS sources and Charlotte Mason. It also has a description of how the author does hymn study in her home.

Simply Charlotte Mason – Instructions for hymn study as well as other resources and an alternate (non-LDS) hymn list.