#232 Let Us Oft Speak Kind Words

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1. Let us oft speak kind words to each other
At home or where’er we may be;
Like the warblings of birds on the heather,
The tones will be welcome and free.
They’ll gladden the heart that’s repining,
Give courage and hope from above,
And where the dark clouds hide the shining,
Let in the bright sunlight of love.

Oh, the kind words we give shall in memory live
And sunshine forever impart.
Let us oft speak kind words to each other;
Kind words are sweet tones of the heart.

2. Like the sunbeams of morn on the mountains,
The soul they awake to good cheer;
Like the murmur of cool, pleasant fountains,
They fall in sweet cadences near.
Let’s oft, then, in kindly toned voices,
Our mutual friendship renew,
Till heart meets with heart and rejoices
In friendship that ever is true.

Text: Joseph L. Townsend, 1849-1942
Music: Ebenezer Beesley, 1840-1906

-History: (Source: Wikipedia)

Written By: Joseph L. Townsend

Joseph L. Townsend (August 9, 1849 – April 1, 1942) was a writer of many Latter-day Saint hymns.

Townsend was born in Canton, Bradford County, Pennsylvania. He grew up in Ohio, Kansas and Missouri. Townsend studied at the University of Missouri.[1] He came to Salt Lake City in 1872 to try and improve his health. While there he joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Townsend later served as a missionary for the church in the Southern States Mission.[2]

Townsend ran a drugstore in Payson, Utah for 15 years. He then taught for two years at Brigham Young Academy, the predecessor of Brigham Young University. After this he taught at Salt Lake City High School.[2] He died at Payson, Utah.

His hymns that are in the 1985 Latter-day Saint hymnal are #52 The Day Dawn is Breaking, #99 Nearer, Dear Savior, to Thee, #185 Reverently and Meekly Now, #232 Let Us Oft Speak Kind Words To Each Other, #239 Choose the Right, #258 O Thou Rock Of Our Salvation, #259 Hope of Israel, #271 Oh, Holy Words of Truth and Love, #274 The Iron Rod and #286 Oh, What Songs of the Heart.

Music By: Ebenezer Beesley

Ebenezer Beesley (14 December 1840 – 21 March 1906) was a Latter-day Saint hymn writer and composer. The music for twelve of the hymns in the 1985 English-language hymnal ofThe Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints written by him.

Beesley was born in BicesterOxfordshireEngland.[1][2] His parents joined the LDS Church when he was quite young and he was baptized a member of the church on September 22, 1849.

In 1859, Beesley emigrated to Utah Territory in the George Rowley Handcart Company with his family, including first wife Sarah Hancock Beesley.[3] They first lived in Tooele, Utah, but later they moved to Salt Lake City. In the 19th Ward in Salt Lake City, Beesley served as both choir director and music director for Sunday School. He studied under George Careless.[1]In 1863, Beesley joined the Salt Lake Theatre Orchestra, where he played the violin.[4]

Beesley was a contributor to the Juvenile Instructor magazine. He also was one of the men appointed by John Taylor to oversee the publication of the Latter-day Saints’ Psalmody, which was the first LDS Church hymnbook to include music.[1]

In 1880, Beesley became the director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. In September of that year, Beesley led the choir’s first excursion outside of Salt Lake City on a trip to American Fork, Utah where they performed with the local choir for a large group of citizens.[5] Beesley served as the choir director until 1889.[1]

After serving with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Beesley taught in Tooele and then for a time in Lehi, Utah. He then moved back to Salt Lake City where he died.[1]

In the 1985 LDS Church hymnal the music for the following hymns was composed by Beesley:

  • hymn #5 “High on a Mountain Top”
  • hymn #16 “What Glorious Scenes Mine Eyes Behold”
  • hymn #32 “The Happy Day At Last Has Come”
  • hymn #76 “God of Our Fathers, We Come unto Thee”
  • hymn #77 “Great Is the Lord”
  • hymn #156 “Sing We Now at Parting”
  • hymn #177 “Tis Sweet to Sing the Matchless Love” Tune name=Hancock
  • hymn #185 “Reverently and Meekly Now”
  • hymn #232 “Let Us Oft Speak Kind Words”
  • hymn #280 “Welcome, Welcome, Sabbath Morning”
  • hymn #282 “We Meet Again in Sabbath School”