Jesus, Once of Humble Birth (Male Chorus)

Let me make this clear: the organ is my instrument.

That being said, I respectfully (and sometimes begrudgingly) acknowledge that other musical genres exist. One of my favorites is the male chorus. The sound of men singing together can be subtle, powerful, and inspirational.

As a lover of church history, I value the early converts that helped restore the church to the earth. The poem “Jesus, Once of Humble Birth” was written by one of those people: Parley P. Pratt. He was an early follower of Joseph Smith, but became disillusioned in the apostasy that followed the Kirtland financial crisis. Pratt eventually realized that he had made an error, went to Joseph and humbly sought his forgiveness, which was granted. Pratt never wavered after that experience. One of his greatest spiritual gifts was the ability to take correction with humility and make needed course corrections.

Pratt was a gifted poet. He wrote many of our unique Latter-day Saint hymn texts: The Morning Breaks, Come, Oh Thou King of Kings and An Angel From on High are some examples of his work.

This reharmonization, which came to me as I rode my bicycle to work over a quarter of a century ago, is likely my first real composition.

Jesus, Once of Humble Birth — PDF



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