25 Hymns You Didn't Realize Were Written by Prophets and General Authorities

by | Sep. 22, 2018

Mormon Life

Hymns are such an important part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They fill the room with the Spirit during meetings and often guide and inspire us in our everyday lives. The Church announced in June that a new hymnbook is in the works, so we thought we would take a look at some of our favorite hymns written by prophets and general authorities throughout Church history. 

Gordon B. Hinckley, 15th Prophet of the Church 

President Hinckley wrote the words to “My Redeemer Lives” (hymn 135) while Elder G. Homer Durham composed the music.

Bruce R. McConkie, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 

During his 1972 talk “The Testimony of Jesus,” Bruce R. McConkie read the words to a poem he wrote called “I Believe in Christ.” The poem was set to music and is now a favorite in the hymnbook. 

Parley P. Pratt, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 

Parley P. Pratt was nicknamed the “poet-apostle” while serving his mission in England. He wrote many hymns throughout his lifetime, and seven are in our hymnbook today, including “The Morning Breaks,” “Truth Eternal,” “ An Angel From on High,” “Come, O Thou King of Kings,” “ Father in Heaven, We Do Believe,” “Jesus, Once of Humble Birth,” and “ Behold Thy Sons and Daughters Lord.”  

Joseph Fielding Smith, 10th Prophet of the Church 

On a long train ride from Utah to Arizona, Joseph Fielding Smith wrote hymn 127, “Does the Journey Seem Long?” 

Lee Tom Perry, General Sunday School Board and Mission President 

Lee Tom Perry (son of apostle L. Tom Perry) wrote the words to hymn 169, “As Now We Take the Sacrament.” 

Marion D. Hanks, General Authority 

Marion D. Hanks served as an assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and later a member of the presidency of the Seventy. He wrote the lyrics for hymn 198, “That Easter Morn.” 

Charles W. Penrose, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Charles W. Penrose wrote the words for four hymns. These included “O Ye Mountains High” (no. 34), “God of Our Fathers, We Come unto Thee” (no. 76), "Up, Awake, Ye Defenders of Zion" (no. 248), and "School Thy Feelings" (no. 336). 

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