Joseph M. Scriven (b. Seapatrick, County Down, Ireland, 1819; d. Bewdley, Rice Lake, ON, Canada, 1886), an Irish immigrant to Canada, wrote this text near Port Hope, Ontario, in 1855. Because his life was filled with grief and trials, Scriven often needed the solace of the Lord as described in his famous hymn.
Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, he enrolled in a military college to prepare for an army career. However, poor health forced him to give up that ambition. Soon after came a second blow—his fiancée died in a drowning accident on the eve of their wedding in 1844. Later that year he moved to Ontario, where he taught school in Woodstock and Brantford. His plans for marriage were dashed again when his new bride-to-be di… Go to person page >
Translator: Manfred Retzlaff
Manfred Retzlaff (who uses the name Manfredo Ratislavo in Esperanto) is a German, born November 4, 1938.
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Manfred Retzlaff translated "Ho Jesu', amiko mia" according to both the English original by Joseph M. Scriven (1857) and the German translation by Ernst Gebhardt (1832-1899). A message from Reinhard Pflueger on the KELI-Dia Regno email list states that Manfred Retzlaff also translated the fourth stanza, but I do not have that. (See http://www.geocities.ws/cigneto/thctxt/0/whatafrie0.html)
CONVERSE (also "Erie", named for the city in Pennsylvania where the composer lived for many years) was written in 1868 and published two years later in his Silver Wings under the pseudonym Karl Reden. The tune has also been called "Friendship."
–Hymnal Companion to the Lutheran Book of Worship