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Henry Francis Lyte

1793 - 1847 Person Name: H. F. Lyte Scripture: Mark 10:21 Author of "Taking the Cross" in Sacred Songs and Solos Lyte, Henry Francis, M.A., son of Captain Thomas Lyte, was born at Ednam, near Kelso, June 1, 1793, and educated at Portora (the Royal School of Enniskillen), and at Trinity College, Dublin, of which he was a Scholar, and where he graduated in 1814. During his University course he distinguished himself by gaining the English prize poem on three occasions. At one time he had intended studying Medicine; but this he abandoned for Theology, and took Holy Orders in 1815, his first curacy being in the neighbourhood of Wexford. In 1817, he removed to Marazion, in Cornwall. There, in 1818, he underwent a great spiritual change, which shaped and influenced the whole of his after life, the immediate cause being the illness and death of a brother clergyman. Lyte says of him:— "He died happy under the belief that though he had deeply erred, there was One whose death and sufferings would atone for his delinquencies, and be accepted for all that he had incurred;" and concerning himself he adds:— "I was greatly affected by the whole matter, and brought to look at life and its issue with a different eye than before; and I began to study my Bible, and preach in another manner than I had previously done." From Marazion he removed, in 1819, to Lymington, where he composed his Tales on the Lord's Prayer in verse (pub. in 1826); and in 1823 he was appointed Perpetual Curate of Lower Brixham, Devon. That appointment he held until his death, on Nov. 20, 1847. His Poems of Henry Vaughan, with a Memoir, were published in 1846. His own Poetical works were:— (1) Poems chiefly Religious 1833; 2nd ed. enlarged, 1845. (2) The Spirit of the Psalms, 1834, written in the first instance for use in his own Church at Lower Brixham, and enlarged in 1836; (3) Miscellaneous Poems (posthumously) in 1868. This last is a reprint of the 1845 ed. of his Poems, with "Abide with me" added. (4) Remains, 1850. Lyte's Poems have been somewhat freely drawn upon by hymnal compilers; but by far the larger portion of his hymns found in modern collections are from his Spirit of the Psalms. In America his hymns are very popular. In many instances, however, through mistaking Miss Auber's (q. v.) Spirit of the Psalms, 1829, for his, he is credited with more than is his due. The Andover Sabbath Hymn Book, 1858, is specially at fault in this respect. The best known and most widely used of his compositions are "Abide with me, fast falls the eventide;” “Far from my heavenly home;" "God of mercy, God of grace;" "Pleasant are Thy courts above;" "Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;" and "There is a safe and secret place." These and several others are annotated under their respective first lines: the rest in common use are:— i. From his Poems chiefly Religious, 1833 and 1845. 1. Above me hangs the silent sky. For Use at Sea. 2. Again, 0 Lord, I ope mine eyes. Morning. 3. Hail to another Year. New Year. 4. How good, how faithful, Lord, art Thou. Divine care of Men. 5. In tears and trials we must sow (1845). Sorrow followed by Joy. 6. My [our] rest is in heaven, my [our] rest is not here. Heaven our Home. 7. 0 Lord, how infinite Thy love. The Love of God in Christ. 8. Omniscient God, Thine eye divine. The Holy Ghost Omniscient. 9. The leaves around me falling. Autumn. 10. The Lord hath builded for Himself. The Universe the Temple of God. 11. Vain were all our toil and labour. Success is of God. 12. When at Thy footstool, Lord, I bend. Lent. 13. When earthly joys glide swift away. Ps. cii. 14. Wilt Thou return to me, O Lord. Lent. 15. With joy we hail the sacred day. Sunday. ii. From his Spirit of the Psalms, 1834. 16. Be merciful to us, O God. Ps. lvii. 17. Blest is the man who knows the Lord. Ps. cxii. 18. Blest is the man whose spirit shares. Ps. xli. 19. From depths of woe to God I cry. Ps. cxxxx. 20. Gently, gently lay Thy rod. Ps. vi. 21. Glorious Shepherd of the sheep. Ps. xxiii. 22. Glory and praise to Jehovah on high. Ps. xxix. 23. God in His Church is known. Ps. lxxvi. 24. God is our Refuge, tried and proved. Ps. xlvi. 25. Great Source of my being. Ps. lxxiii. 26. Hear, O Lord, our supplication. Ps. lxiv. 27. How blest the man who fears the Lord. Ps.cxxviii. 28. Humble, Lord, my haughty spirit. Ps. cxxxi. 29. In this wide, weary world of care. Ps. cxxxii. 30. In vain the powers of darkness try. Ps.lii. 31. Jehovah speaks, let man be awed. Ps. xlix. 32. Judge me, O Lord, and try my heart. Ps. xxvi. 33. Judge me, O Lord, to Thee I fly. Ps. xliii. 34. Lord, I have sinned, but O forgive. Ps. xli. 35. Lord, my God, in Thee I trust. Ps. vii. 36. Lord of the realms above, Our Prophet, &c. Ps.xlv. 37. Lone amidst the dead and dying. Ps. lxii. 38. Lord God of my salvation. Ps. lxxxviii. 39. Lord, I look to Thee for all. Ps. xxxi. 40. Lord, I would stand with thoughtful eye. Ps. lxix. 41. Lord, my God, in Thee I trust. Ps. vii. 42. My God, my King, Thy praise I sing. Ps. cviii. 43. My God, what monuments I see. Ps. xxxvi. 44. My spirit on [to] Thy care. Ps. xxxi. 45. My trust is in the Lord. Ps. xi. 46. Not unto us, Almighty Lord [God]. Ps. cxv. 47. O God of glory, God of grace. Ps. xc. 48. O God of love, how blest are they. Ps. xxxvii. 49. O God of love, my God Thou art. Ps. lxiii. 50. O God of truth and grace. Ps. xviii. 51. O had I, my Saviour, the wings of a dove. Ps. lv. 52. O how blest the congregation. Ps. lxxxix. 53. O how safe and [how] happy he. Ps. xci. 54. O plead my cause, my Saviour plead. Ps. xxxv. 55. O praise the Lord, 'tis sweet to raise. Ps. cxlvii. 56. O praise the Lord; ye nations, pour. Ps. cxvii. 57. O praise ye the Lord With heart, &c. Ps. cxlix. 58. O that the Lord's salvation. Ps. xiv. 59. O Thou Whom thoughtless men condemn. Ps. xxxvi. 60. Of every earthly stay bereft. Ps. lxxiv. 61. Our hearts shall praise Thee, God of love. Ps. cxxxviii. 62. Pilgrims here on earth and strangers. Ps. xvi. 63. Praise for Thee, Lord, in Zion waits. Ps. lxv. 64. Praise to God on high be given. Ps. cxxxiv. 65. Praise ye the Lord, His servants, raise. Ps. cxiii. 66. Redeem'd from guilt, redeem'd from fears. Ps. cxvi. 67. Save me by Thy glorious name. Ps. liv. 68. Shout, ye people, clap your hands. Ps. xlvii. 69. Sing to the Lord our might. Ps. lxxxi. 70. Strangers and pilgrims here below. Ps. cix. 71. Sweet is the solemn voice that calls. Ps. cxxii. 72. The Church of God below. Ps. lxxxvii. 73. The Lord is King, let earth be glad. Ps. xcvii. 74. The Lord is on His throne. Ps. xciii. 75. The Lord is our Refuge, the Lord is our Guide. Ps. xlvii. 76. The mercies of my God and King. Ps. lxxxix. 77. The Lord Who died on earth for men. Ps. xxi. 78. Tis a pleasant thing to fee. Ps. cxxxiii. 79. Thy promise, Lord, is perfect peace. Ps. iii. 80. Unto Thee I lift mine [my] eyes. Ps. cxxiii. 81. Whom shall [should] we love like Thee? Ps. xviii. Lyte's versions of the Psalms are criticised where their sadness, tenderness and beauty are set forth. His hymns in the Poems are characterized by the same features, and rarely swell out into joy and gladness. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907) ================== Lyte, Henry Francis, p. 706, i. Additional versions of Psalms are in common use:-- 1. Lord, a thousand foes surround us. Psalms lix. 2. Praise, Lord, for Thee in Zion waits. Psalms lxv. 3. The Christian like his Lord of old. Psalms cxl. 4. The Lord of all my Shepherd is. Psalms xxiii. 5. The Lord of heaven to earth is come. Psalms xcviii. 6. Thy mercy, Lord, the sinner's hope. Psalms xxxvi. 7. To Thee, O Lord, in deep distress. Psalms cxlii. Sometimes given as "To God I turned in wild distress." 8. Uphold me, Lord, too prone to stray. Psalms i. 9. When Jesus to our [my] rescue came. Psalms cxxvi. These versions appeared in the 1st edition of Lyte's Spirit of the Psalms, 1834. It must be noted that the texts of the 1834, the 1836, and the 3rd ed., 1858, vary considerably, but Lyte was not responsible for the alterations and omissions in the last, which was edited by another hand for use at St. Mark's, Torquay. Lyte's version of Psalms xxix., "Glory and praise to Jehovah on high" (p. 706, ii., 22), first appeared in his Poems, 1st ed., 1833, p. 25. Read also No. 39 as "Lord, I look for all to Thee." --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, Appendix, Part II (1907)

Judson W. Van DeVenter

1855 - 1939 Person Name: Judson W. VanDeVenter Scripture: Mark 10:28 Author of "All to Jesus I Surrender" in Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) Judson W. Van DeVenter was born 15 December 1855 on a farm near the village of Dundee, Mishigan. He was educated in the country and village schools, and at Hillsdale College. He later moved to St. Petersburg, Florida. He wrote about 100 hymns. Dianne Shapiro, from "The Singers and Their Songs: sketches of living gospel hymn writers" by Charles Hutchinson Gabriel (Chicago: The Rodeheaver Company, 1916)

W. S. Weeden

1847 - 1908 Person Name: Winfield S. Weeden Scripture: Mark 10:28 Composer of "SURRENDER" in Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) Winfield S. Weeden was born in 1847 in Middleport, OH. In his early life he was active in teaching singing schools throughout that area in Ohio. As singer and associate to Judson VandeVenter in his evangelistic campaigns, Weeden assisted in meetings at East Palestine and Sebring. He compiled several collections of hymns among them The Peacemaker, Songs of the Peacemaker, and Songs of Sovereign Grace. Weeden died in 1908. (see 101 More Hymn Stories, Osbeck, Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 1985) Mary Louise VanDyke

Hubert P. Main

1839 - 1925 Scripture: Mark 10:28 Arranger of "[Jesus, I my cross have taken]" in Hymns of Faith Born: Au­gust 17, 1839, Ridge­field, Con­nec­ti­cut. Died: Oct­ob­er 7, 1925, New­ark, New Jer­sey. Son of Syl­ves­ter Main, Hu­bert at­tend­ed sing­ing school un­til 1854, when he went to New York Ci­ty and worked as an er­rand boy in a wall­pa­per house. In Ap­ril 1855, he be­came an er­rand boy in the Bris­tow & Morse pi­a­no com­pa­ny. That same year, he helped his fa­ther ed­it the Sun­day School Lute song­book by Isaac Wood­bu­ry. In 1867, Main was called to fill a po­si­tion in Wil­liam Brad­bu­ry’s pub­lish­ing house. Fol­low­ing Brad­bu­ry’s death in 1868, the Big­low & Main pub­lish­ers were formed as its suc­cess­or. In ad­di­tion to pub­lish­ing, Main wrote over 1,000 piec­es of mu­sic—part song, sing­ing school songs, Sun­day School mu­sic, hymns, an­thems, etc. He al­so col­lect­ed mu­sic books; in 1891, he sold his col­lect­ion of over 3,500 vol­umes to the New­ber­ry Library in Chi­ca­go, Il­li­nois, where they were known as the "Main Lib­ra­ry." Main’s works in­clude: Book of Praise for the Sun­day School, with George A. Bell (New York: Big­low & Main, 1875) Little Pil­grim Songs/, with Mrs. Wil­bur F. Crafts (New York: Big­low & Main, 1884) Hymns of Praise, with George A. Bell (New York: Big­low & Main, 1884) Gems of Song for the Sun­day School, with Ira Sank­ey (Chi­ca­go, Il­li­nois: The Big­low & Main Co., 1901) Sources-- Hall, pp. 141-6 Hughes, pp. 480-1 Jones, pp. 89-90 McCutchan, p. 299 Hustad, p. 280 Nutter, p. 461 http://www.hymntime.com/tch/bio/m/a/i/main_hp.htm

Cecil Frances Alexander

1818 - 1895 Person Name: Mrs. Cecil Frances Alexander (1823- ) Scripture: Mark 10:21 Author of "Jesus calls us, o'er the tumult" in Carmina Sanctorum, a selection of hymns and songs of praise with tunes As a small girl, Cecil Frances Humphries (b. Redcross, County Wicklow, Ireland, 1818; Londonderry, Ireland, 1895) wrote poetry in her school's journal. In 1850 she married Rev. William Alexander, who later became the Anglican primate (chief bishop) of Ireland. She showed her concern for disadvantaged people by traveling many miles each day to visit the sick and the poor, providing food, warm clothes, and medical supplies. She and her sister also founded a school for the deaf. Alexander was strongly influenced by the Oxford Movement and by John Keble's Christian Year. Her first book of poetry, Verses for Seasons, was a "Christian Year" for children. She wrote hymns based on the Apostles' Creed, baptism, the Lord's Supper, the Ten Commandments, and prayer, writing in simple language for children. Her more than four hundred hymn texts were published in Verses from the Holy Scripture (1846), Hymns for Little Children (1848), and Hymns Descriptive and Devotional ( 1858). Bert Polman ================== Alexander, Cecil Frances, née Humphreys, second daughter of the late Major John Humphreys, Miltown House, co. Tyrone, Ireland, b. 1823, and married in 1850 to the Rt. Rev. W. Alexander, D.D., Bishop of Derry and Raphoe. Mrs. Alexander's hymns and poems number nearly 400. They are mostly for children, and were published in her Verses for Holy Seasons, with Preface by Dr. Hook, 1846; Poems on Subjects in the Old Testament, pt. i. 1854, pt. ii. 1857; Narrative Hymns for Village Schools, 1853; Hymns for Little Children, 1848; Hymns Descriptive and Devotional, 1858; The Legend of the Golden Prayers 1859; Moral Songs, N.B.; The Lord of the Forest and his Vassals, an Allegory, &c.; or contributed to the Lyra Anglicana, the S.P.C.K. Psalms and Hymns, Hymns Ancient & Modern, and other collections. Some of the narrative hymns are rather heavy, and not a few of the descriptive are dull, but a large number remain which have won their way to the hearts of the young, and found a home there. Such hymns as "In Nazareth in olden time," "All things bright and beautiful," "Once in Royal David's city," "There is a green hill far away," "Jesus calls us o'er the tumult," "The roseate hues of early dawn," and others that might be named, are deservedly popular and are in most extensive use. Mrs. Alexander has also written hymns of a more elaborate character; but it is as a writer for children that she has excelled. - John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907) =============== Alexander, Cecil F., née Humphreys, p. 38, ii. Additional hymns to those already noted in this Dictionary are in common use:— 1. Christ has ascended up again. (1853.) Ascension. 2. His are the thousand sparkling rills. (1875.) Seven Words on the Cross (Fifth Word). 3. How good is the Almighty God. (1S48.) God, the Father. 4. In [a] the rich man's garden. (1853.) Easter Eve. 5. It was early in the morning. (1853.) Easter Day. 6. So be it, Lord; the prayers are prayed. (1848.) Trust in God. 7. Saw you never in the twilight? (1853.) Epiphany. 8. Still bright and blue doth Jordan flow. (1853.) Baptism of Our Lord. 9. The angels stand around Thy throne. (1848.) Submission to the Will of God. 10. The saints of God are holy men. (1848.) Communion of Saints. 11. There is one Way and only one. (1875.) SS. Philip and James. 12. Up in heaven, up in heaven. (1848.) Ascension. 13. We are little Christian children. (1848.) Holy Trinity. 14. We were washed in holy water. (1848.) Holy Baptism. 15. When of old the Jewish mothers. (1853.) Christ's Invitation to Children. 16. Within the Churchyard side by side. (1848.) Burial. Of the above hymns those dated 1848 are from Mrs. Alexander's Hymns for Little Children; those dated 1853, from Narrative Hymns, and those dated 1875 from the 1875 edition of Hymns Ancient & Modern. Several new hymns by Mrs. Alexander are included in the 1891 Draft Appendix to the Irish Church Hymnal. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, Appendix, Part II (1907) ============= Alexander, Cecil F. , p. 38, ii. Mrs. Alexander died at Londonderry, Oct. 12, 1895. A number of her later hymns are in her Poems, 1896, which were edited by Archbishop Alexander. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907) See also in:Hymn Writers of the Church

John L. Bell

b. 1949 Person Name: John L. Bell (b. 1949) Scripture: Mark 10:17-22 Author of "Though hope desert my heart" in Church Hymnary (4th ed.) John Bell (b. 1949) was born in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock in Ayrshire, intending to be a music teacher when he felt the call to the ministry. But in frustration with his classes, he did volunteer work in a deprived neighborhood in London for a time and also served for two years as an associate pastor at the English Reformed Church in Amsterdam. After graduating he worked for five years as a youth pastor for the Church of Scotland, serving a large region that included about 500 churches. He then took a similar position with the Iona Community, and with his colleague Graham Maule, began to broaden the youth ministry to focus on renewal of the church’s worship. His approach soon turned to composing songs within the identifiable traditions of hymnody that found began to address concerns missing from the current Scottish hymnal: "I discovered that seldom did our hymns represent the plight of poor people to God. There was nothing that dealt with unemployment, nothing that dealt with living in a multicultural society and feeling disenfranchised. There was nothing about child abuse…,that reflected concern for the developing world, nothing that helped see ourselves as brothers and sisters to those who are suffering from poverty or persecution." [from an interview in Reformed Worship (March 1993)] That concern not only led to writing many songs, but increasingly to introducing them internationally in many conferences, while also gathering songs from around the world. He was convener for the fourth edition of the Church of Scotland’s Church Hymnary (2005), a very different collection from the previous 1973 edition. His books, The Singing Thing and The Singing Thing Too, as well as the many collections of songs and worship resources produced by John Bell—some together with other members of the Iona Community’s “Wild Goose Resource Group,” are available in North America from GIA Publications. Emily Brink

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

1756 - 1791 Person Name: Wolfgang A. Mozart Scripture: Mark 10:28 Composer (attributed to) of "[Jesus, I my cross have taken]" in Hymns of Faith J. C. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; b. 1756, Salzburg; d. 1791, Vienna Evangelical Lutheran Hymnal, 1908

Henry Thomas Smart

1813 - 1879 Person Name: Henry Smart Scripture: Mark 10:28 Composer of "BETHANY" in The Presbyterian Book of Praise Henry Smart (b. Marylebone, London, England, 1813; d. Hampstead, London, 1879), a capable composer of church music who wrote some very fine hymn tunes (REGENT SQUARE, 354, is the best-known). Smart gave up a career in the legal profession for one in music. Although largely self taught, he became proficient in organ playing and composition, and he was a music teacher and critic. Organist in a number of London churches, including St. Luke's, Old Street (1844-1864), and St. Pancras (1864-1869), Smart was famous for his extemporiza­tions and for his accompaniment of congregational singing. He became completely blind at the age of fifty-two, but his remarkable memory enabled him to continue playing the organ. Fascinated by organs as a youth, Smart designed organs for impor­tant places such as St. Andrew Hall in Glasgow and the Town Hall in Leeds. He composed an opera, oratorios, part-songs, some instrumental music, and many hymn tunes, as well as a large number of works for organ and choir. He edited the Choralebook (1858), the English Presbyterian Psalms and Hymns for Divine Worship (1867), and the Scottish Presbyterian Hymnal (1875). Some of his hymn tunes were first published in Hymns Ancient and Modern (1861). Bert Polman

Brian A. Wren

b. 1936 Person Name: Brian Wren, 1936- Scripture: Mark 10:31 Author of "When God Is a Child" in Worship and Rejoice Brian Wren (b. Romford, Essex, England, 1936) is a major British figure in the revival of contemporary hymn writing. He studied French literature at New College and theology at Mansfield College in Oxford, England. Ordained in 1965, he was pastor of the Congregational Church (now United Reformed) in Hockley and Hawkwell, Essex, from 1965 to 1970. He worked for the British Council of Churches and several other organizations involved in fighting poverty and promoting peace and justice. This work resulted in his writing of Education for Justice (1977) and Patriotism and Peace (1983). With a ministry throughout the English-speaking world, Wren now resides in the United States where he is active as a freelance lecturer, preacher, and full-time hymn writer. His hymn texts are published in Faith Looking Forward (1983), Praising a Mystery (1986), Bring Many Names (1989), New Beginnings (1993), and Faith Renewed: 33 Hymns Reissued and Revised (1995), as well as in many modern hymnals. He has also produced What Language Shall I Borrow? (1989), a discussion guide to inclusive language in Christian worship. Bert Polman

Fred Pratt Green

1903 - 2000 Person Name: Fred Pratt Green, 1903-2000 Scripture: Mark 10:21 Author of "Rejoice in God's Saints" in Worship and Rejoice The name of the Rev. F. Pratt Green is one of the best-known of the contemporary school of hymnwriters in the British Isles. His name and writings appear in practically every new hymnal and "hymn supplement" wherever English is spoken and sung. And now they are appearing in American hymnals, poetry magazines, and anthologies. Mr. Green was born in Liverpool, England, in 1903. Ordained in the British Methodist ministry, he has been pastor and district superintendent in Brighton and York, and now served in Norwich. There he continued to write new hymns "that fill the gap between the hymns of the first part of this century and the 'far-out' compositions that have crowded into some churches in the last decade or more." --Seven New Hymns of Hope , 1971. Used by permission.

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