Ronald D. Dennis, trans. and ed., Defending the Faith: Early Welsh Missionary Publications (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2003).
P6 DAVIS, John. A welcome hymn. Merthyr Tydfil: J. Davis, Printer, 1850.
1 p. 17 cm. Welsh Mormon Writings 43.
This hymn was composed in English by John Davis in honor of the Apostle John Taylor’ s visit to Merthyr Tydfil on 9 June 1850. John Taylor had visited Wales on a previous occasion, over three years before. Both times he was the featured speaker at a conference. Because most Welsh Saints did not understand English, Taylor’ s comments had to be interpreted into Welsh. Whether this was done simultaneously or otherwise is not clear from the conference minutes.
It was a rare occasion for one of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to visit the Saints in Wales. Thus John Davis prepared A welcome hymn to make the Apostle’ s visit memorable, both to him and to those who attended the conference. Davis states in the three lines that follow the title that the hymn was sung at the conference, but he does not indicate by whom. If it was sung by the congregation, there were many who, because of the language barrier, had no idea what they were singing.
The hymn was most likely printed before the conference so that those singing it would have the words.
Sung in a Conference at Merthyr-Tydfil, held on the 9th of June, 1850, while the Apostle John Taylor was present, who was about leaving, on his mission, for France.
COME, ye humble Saints of Cambria,
Sing to praise the Lord on high;
For his people and their blessings
Do increase and multiply.
Here, we witness an Apostle,
Sent again to cheer our hearts,
(From the Valley of the Mountains),
Who the living words imparts.
Once before we hail’ d his presence—
Cambrian worthies heard his voice;
And tho’ “other lips” were speaking,
Yet the throng did all rejoice:
Now again, O Lord, thy servant
May be honour’ d by us all,
In abiding by his counsels,
And in listening to his call.
Pray the Lord to speed his mission
To proclaim the word of God,
That the French may know the Saviour,
And escape his iron rod:
Let our nation do their duty—
Let them feel for others too,
So that many other people,
Like themselves, be born anew.