Hymn #448: Take My Life, God, Let It Be

Frances Ridley Havergal (1836-1879) wrote this poem following a prayer meeting in 1874.  It has been translated into many languages, including French, German, Swedish, Russian, and some African and Asian languages.  Havergal’s gratitude and Christian commitment are reflected in the text.

Frances R. Havergal spoke English, French, and German fluently and wrote verse in these languages, as well as in Greek, Latin, and Hebrew.  Although her delicate health kept her from traveling extensively, she kept in touch with friends through letters.

Justin Heinrich Knecht (1752-1817) was an accomplished organist and wrote many compositions for the church and theater.  He was born in Biberach, Würtemberg, and spent most of his life there.  This tune, called VIENNA or RAVENNA, was included in a collection of ninety-six other original tunes in 1799.

Justin Heinrich Knecht had a classical education and learned to play a number of orchestral instruments as well as the organ.  In 1790, Knecht introduced the use of program notes in his concert programs, to provide the audience with background information on the music being performed.