Adapter: Tom Colvin (1967)
Published in 13 hymnals

Printable scores: MusicXML
Audio files: MIDI, Recording

Adapter: Tom Colvin

Thomas Stevenson Colvin (Tom), Church of Scotland missionary in Malawi and Ghana, was born in Glasgow on 16 April 1925. He attended the Royal Technical College, Glasgow (now Strathclyde University) where he was chairman of the Student Christian Movement and from where he graduated B.Sc. in 1945. After a period with the Royal Engineers in Burma and Singapore, Colvin returned to Scotland in 1948 to become student assistant minister at Fallin Parish Church in Stirling. Later in the same year he began a three year course in divinity at Trinity College, Glasgow, was again an active member of student bodies, and held the post of president of the SCM. He spent a year after leaving Glasgow as the Travelling Secretary of the SCM, then between 1952 a… Go to person page >

Tune Information

Adapter: Tom Colvin (1967)
Meter: Irregular
Key: F Major
Source: Malawi melody
Copyright: Text and music © 1969, Hope Publishing Co. International copyright secured. All rights reserved. Used by permission.


That Boy-Child of Mary

That boy-child of Mary was born in a stable,
a manger his cradle in Bethlehem.

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Colvin adapted a traditional Malawian melody for this text and named the tune for the Blantyre Synod in Malawi. BLANTRYE is in a call-and-response form; therefore, it is best to alternate between soloists or small choir and the entire group or congregation. Try having a soloist sing stanza 1, the choir sing in parts on stanzas 2-4 (adjusting the hymnal harmonization, or using a published arrangement), and the entire group sing stanza 5 as well as the refrain. Another possibility would be to have young children gather to sing the refrain and the whole congregation sing the stanzas. Use very light accompaniment (if any at all), but support the tune with improvised percussion patterns: drums, tambourines, shakers, or clapping; Orff xylophones would also work well. This hymn is another one of those perpetual energy songs with no breaks between the refrain and the stanzas. --Psalter Hymnal Handbook


Instances (1 - 13 of 13)Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
Baptist Hymnal 1991 #110TextFlexscoreAudio
Evangelical Lutheran Worship #293Text
Glory to God: the Presbyterian Hymnal #139Text InfoTextFlexscoreAudioPage Scan
Lift Every Voice and Sing II: an African American hymnal #25TextPage Scan
Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #55TextPage Scan
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #352Text InfoTune InfoTextAudioPage Scan
Sing With Me #100TextPage Scan
Songs for Life #130TextPage Scan
The United Methodist Hymnal #241TextFlexscoreAudioPage Scan
The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement #45
The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement II #28
This Far By Faith: an African American resource for worship #54TextPage Scan
Worship and Rejoice #211TextScoreAudioPage Scan
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