Charles Wesley, M.A. was the great hymn-writer of the Wesley family, perhaps, taking quantity and quality into consideration, the great hymn-writer of all ages. Charles Wesley was the youngest son and 18th child of Samuel and Susanna Wesley, and was born at Epworth Rectory, Dec. 18, 1707. In 1716 he went to Westminster School, being provided with a home and board by his elder brother Samuel, then usher at the school, until 1721, when he was elected King's Scholar, and as such received his board and education free. In 1726 Charles Wesley was elected to a Westminster studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, where he took his degree in 1729, and became a college tutor. In the early part of the same year his religious impressions were much deepene… Go to person page >
Author: John R. Clements
John R. Clements was born in County Armagh, Ireland 28 November 1868 and was brought to the United States at the age of two years. He worked at the age of thirteen as a retail grocery clerk and had a successful wholesale grocery business. He began writing poetry when he was young.
Dianne Shapiro, from "The Singers and Their Songs: sketches of living gospel hymn writers" by Charles Hutchinson Gabriel (Chicago: The Rodeheaver Company, 1916) Go to person page >
Ye neighbours and friends Of Jesus, draw near. C. Wesley. [Thanksgiving for Success of the Gospel.] This is No. 4 of four hymns written after preaching to the Newcastle colliers, and was published in the Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1749, vol. i., and again in the Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. v., p. 115. Under the date of Nov. 30, 1746, Jackson in his Memoir of the Rev. Charles Wesley, says;—
”The very spirited hymn beginning ‘Ye neighbours, and friends of Jesus, draw near,' was written by Mr. Charles Wesley 'after preaching to the Newcastle colliers,' and most probably during his present visit to that town. Under the date of Sunday, Nov. 30, he uses in his journal the phraseology upon which the hymn is founded. On that day he preached in one of the streets of Newcastle to listening crowds, who forgot the sharpness of the frost while engaged in the worship of God, and in hearing the word of life and mercy." (Small edition, 1848, p. 191.)
The hymn is in 12 stanzas of 4 double lines. In the Wesleyan Hymn Book
, 1780, stanzas i., ii., viii.-xii. were given as No. 38, and this has become its recognized form in later collections.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
Display Title: Ye Neighbors and Friends of JesusFirst Line: Ye neighbors, and friends of Jesus, draw near:Tune Title: AUSTRIA (Beethoven)Author: Charles WesleyMeter: 10.10.11.11Source: Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1749, volume I