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Shepherd of Tender Youth

Representative Text

1 Shepherd of tender youth,
guiding in love and truth
through winding ways:
Christ, our triumphant King,
we come your name to sing;
here we our children bring
to shout your praise.

2 You are our holy Lord,
the all-subduing Word,
healer of strife:
you did yourself abase,
that from sin's deep disgrace
your might now save our race,
and give us life.

3 You are the great High Priest,
you have prepared the feast
of heav'nly love:
while in our mortal pain,
none calls on you in vain;
help you do not disdain,
help from above.

4 Forever be our Guide,
our Shepherd and our pride,
our staff and song:
Jesus, O Christ of God,
by your enduring Word,
lead us where you have trod;
make our faith strong.

5 So now and till we die,
sound we your praises high,
and joyful sing:
infants and the glad throng
who to your church belong
unite to swell the song
to Christ our King.

Source: Trinity Psalter Hymnal #258

Translator: Henry M. Dexter

Dexter, Henry Martyn, D.D., born at Plympton, Mass., Aug. 13, 1821, and educated at Yale College, and Andover. In 1844 he was ordained Pastor of a Congregational Church at Manchester, New Haven. In 1849 he removed to the Berkeley Street Congregational Church, Boston, where he remained until his appointment as Editor of the Congregationalist, in 1867. Dr. Dexter is the translator of “Shepherd of tender youth" [see Clemens, Titus], in common usage in Great Britain and America.  [Rev. F. M. Bird, M.A.] -- John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)  Go to person page >

Author: Clement of Alexandria

Clemens, Titus Flavins (Clemens Alexandrinus), St. Clement of Alexandria, was born possibly at Athens (although on this point there is no certain information) about A.D. 170. His full name, Titus Flavins Clemens, is given by Eusebius (H. E., vi. 13) and Photius (Cod. Ill), but of his parentage there is no record. Studious, and anxious to satisfy his mind on the highest subjects, he is said to have been a Stoic and Eclectic, and a seeker after truth amongst Greek, Assyrian, Egyptian, and Jewish teachers. He himself enumerates six teachers of eminence under whom he studied the "true tradition of the blessed doctrine of the holy apostles." At Alexandria he came under the teaching of Pantsenus, and embraced Christianity, Pantsenus being at the… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Shepherd of tender youth
Title: Shepherd of Tender Youth
Greek Title: Στόμον πώλων ἀϐαων
Author: Clement of Alexandria (ca200)
Translator: Henry M. Dexter
Language: English
Notes: Earliest known Christian hymn
Copyright: Public Domain



OLIVET (Mason)


Felice de Giardini (b. Turin, Italy, 1716; d. Moscow, Russia, 1796) composed ITALIAN HYMN in three parts for this text at the request of Selina Shirley, the famous evangelically minded Countess of Huntingdon. Giardini was living in London at the time and contributed this tune and three others to Mar…

Go to tune page >



Instances (1 - 9 of 9)

Ambassador Hymnal #385

TextPage Scan

Christian Worship #515

Church Hymnal, Mennonite #55

Hymnal #480

TextPage Scan

Lutheran Service Book #864


Lutheran Worship #471


The Cyber Hymnal #6032


Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #160

TextPage Scan

Trinity Psalter Hymnal #258

Include 250 pre-1979 instances
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