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FAITH, HOPE, AND LOVE.
"AND NOW ABIDETH FAITH, HOPE, LOVE; THESE THREE."
ALBERT J. HOLDEN.
NEW YORK :
25 UNION SQUARE.
CHICAGO MUSIC CO., 152 STATE ST.
COPYRIGHT, 1883, BY WILLIAM A. POND & Co., NEW YORK.
Among the many helpful aids to better work in the Sunday-school, nothing is so much needed as a good collection of hymns : hymns which shall be earnest, stirring, useful, and fairly meet the test of literary criticism. The larger part of the popular Sunday-school hymnology is open to grave censure for many serious literary defects; barren doggerel rhymes, strained metaphors, unhealthy sentiments, are bad enough, but coupled with these is a trite, familiar use of sacred epithets, and the appellations of the Deity and the Saviour, which are as offensive to correct taste as is the general illiteracy which is so marked a feature of the host of Sunday-school singing books whose titles are almost as numerous as the mineral and floral products from which they are named.
The best which could be said for the greater part of the music associated with these so-called hymns, was, that it was quickly and easily caught up: but time tests all things, and the little, jingling, superficial tunes were as quickly and easily dropped and forgotten, and the usefulness of the book was exhausted within two years at most.
Hymns and music, if good, have this quality in common with truth,— they abide and endure: if on the other hand, they are hollow, false, superficial, they, like all will pass away.
SONGS OF FAITH, HOPE, AND LOVE is an earnest effort at improvement in the place it seeks to occupy. A hymn, properly considered, is an expression of praise, an act of devotion, not a statement of creed or dogma; and sectarian theology will fail to find a hymn in this collection which can be claimed as its peculiar property; at the same time there is not a line or sentiment in the entire book which cannot be heartily approved by Christians of every denomination. The title of this book is no random choice; every hymn in it is what a hymn should be,- a song of faith, hope, and love.
The music, if good and true, will find friends without a word being said in its behalf: to those, however, who think that any departure from the simplest harmony is inadmissible in Sunday-school music, it might be well to say that the many years experience of the compiler of this book has proven the fallacy of that idea, and