- The following article is from the Psalter Hymnal Handbook.
st. 1 = Ps. 147:1-3
st. 2 = Ps. 147:4-9
st. 3 = Ps. 147: 10-13
The people of Jerusalem (v. 2) become the "church" (st. 1) in this hymn-like versification of Psalm 147. With minor alterations in each stanza, the versification comes from the 1912 Psalter.
John H. Stockton (b. New Hope, PA, 1813; d. Philadelphia, PA, 1877) composed MINERVA for one of his own gospel-hymn texts, "Come, Every Soul by Sin Oppressed." The tune was published in his Salvation Melodies No.1 (1874); however, it had also been published earlier in Joyful Songs Nos. 1-3 Combined (1869) with the note "arr. by W. G. Fischer, by permission."
The significance of the tune title MINERVA is unknown, unless for some reason it refers to the mythical Roman goddess of wisdom. It is also sometimes known as STOCKTON, after its composer.
Although born into a Presbyterian home, Stockton was converted at the age of twenty-one in a Methodist revival meeting. He became a lay preacher in the Methodist Church in 1844 and was ordained in 1857. After serving several pastorates in New Jersey, he retired in 1874 due to ill health. Throughout his ministry he was strongly interested in evangelism and music. When Dwight 1. Moody and Ira D. Sankey held their revival meetings in Philadelphia, Stockton assisted them and wrote several gospel songs and tunes for their use. He published two collections of hymns: Salvation Melodies (1874) and Precious Songs (1875).
MINERVA is a simple tune in ABB'B form with one consistent rhythmic pattern and the simple harmonization common to many gospel hymns–and thus is easy for guitar. Sing this tune in harmony at a lively tempo using crisp rhythms over a legato organ pedal. The descant was composed by Dale Grotenhuis in 1976 as part of a collection of descants for the 1959 edition of the Psalter Hymnal.
- Visit hymnary.org for more information on this song and additional resources.
- Words and Music: both are in Public Domain. You do not need permission to reprint this song.
- Words and Music: The Words and Music are in the Public Domain; you do not need permission to project or reprint the Words and Music.