Welch ein Freund ist unser Jesus

Author: Joseph Medlicott Scriven

Scriven, Joseph. Mr. Sankey, in his My Life and Sacred Songs, 1906, p. 279, says that Scriven was b. in Dublin in 1820, was a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin, and went to Canada when he was 25, and died there at Port Hope, on Lake Ontario, in 1886. His hymn:— What a Friend we have in Jesus. [Jesus our Friend] was, according to Mr. Sankey, discovered to be his in the following manner: "A neighbour, sitting up with him in his illness, happened upon a manuscript of 'What a Friend we have in Jesus.' Reading it with great delight, and questioning Mr. Scriven about it, he said he had composed it for his mother, to comfort her in a time of special eorrow, not intending any one else should see it." We find the hymn in H. 1... Hastings's S… Go to person page >

Translator: Heinrich Ernst Gebhardt

Ernst (Heinrich) Gebhardt (1832-1899), a Methodist minister of Germany, spent some time in South America and North America and England accompanying R. Pearsail Smith as song leader at his evangelistic meetings. Gebhardt wrote many original hymns and translated over 50 Gospel hymns from English into German, most of them Moody and Sankey songs. They appeared in his Frohe Botschaft and Evangeliums-Lieder (C. F. Spittler, Basel), which were distributed in Europe and America in innumerable volumes. He was the compiler and editor of many other songbooks. Gebhardt's translations of such songs as "Rock of Ages"—"Fels des Heils," and "Oh, Have You Not Heard"—"Ich weiss einen Strom" seem to have more poetic quality than the English. His contri… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Welch ein Freund ist unser Jesus
Original Language: English
Author: Joseph Medlicott Scriven
Translator: Heinrich Ernst Gebhardt
Language: German



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." Born in Warren, Massachusetts, on October 7, 1832, Char…

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Glaubenslieder #313
Include 11 pre-1979 instances