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The General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, on the thirtieth day of May, 1876, adopted the following report:
The Committee on the Revision of the Hymn Book have carefully considered the various papers referred to them, and respectfully report to the General Conference that they are unanimously of the opinion that a thorough revision of the Hymn Book now in use is imperatively demanded. We therefore recommend
1. That the Board of Bishops be requested to appoint, as soon as practicable, a Committee of fifteen, to whom shall be committed the work of revision.
2. That this Committee be selected with reference to convenience of location for division into three sections for working purposes.
3. That when the work of preparatory revision shall be completed by the several sections, the whole Committee shall be duly notified, and the work of each section shall be revised; and that no hymn now in use shall be excluded without a vote of two thirds of the Committee for its rejection, and that no hymn not now in the collection shall be admitted without a vote of two thirds of the Committee in its favor.
4. That when the Committee have completed their work, they shall submit their report to the Bishops for their approval, and the Bishops approving, they are authorized to commend it to the Church.
5. That after the Committee aforesaid shall have completed their revision of the Hymn Book, and their work has been approved by the Bishops as provided for in item 4, they shall have power to prepare a suitable Hymn and Tune Book for the use of the Church.
6. No compensation shall be paid to the Committee employed in the revisal, except for actual expenses incurred.
In accordance with the foregoing resolution, the Bishops appointed the following persons as
THE COMMITTEE OF REVISION.
Joux N. Brown,
JEREMIAH H. BayLiss,
APPROVAL BY THE BISHOPS. To the Committee appointed to revise the Hymn Book :
DEAR BRETIIREN—The Bishops, at their late meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, very thoroughly examined the result of the labors of the Committee appointed under authority of the last General Conference, to revise the Hymn Book of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
1. They went through the entire list of the hymns in the book now in use which the Committee has excluded.
2. They thoughtfully considered every revision made in the text of the hymns which the Committee has retained.
3. They read through carefully, and in many cases repeatedly, every new hymn which the Committee has introduced into the Revised Hymn Book.
After the Committee had made a few changes which the Bishops suggested, the following resolution was unanimously adopted, namely:
Resolved, That we have thoroughly examined, with great satisfaction, the work of the Committee appointed to revise thc Hymn Book. We tender to the members of that Committee our thanks; and believe the gratitude of the Church is due these brethren for the labor they have expended, and the wisdom, taste, and good judgment they have shown in preparing this most excellent book. By order, and on behalf, of the Board of Bishops,
WILLIAM L. HARRIS, Secretary. New York, June 15, 1877.
MEMBERS AND FRIENDS OF THE METHODIST
UNDER the direction of the General Conference of 1876 this revised edition of our excellent Hymn Book has been prepared. The action of the General Conference, the names of the Committee selected by the Bishops, and the judgment of the Bishops as expressed to the Committee, are herewith presented. You will note the great care which has marked every part of the work, whether in rejecting any of the hymns formerly used, or in changing their phraseology, or in the selection of those which are new. Though perfection is not claimed, yet we believe the present Hymn Book will be considered a great improvement on the preceding one.
We most cordially commend it to you as one of the choicest selections of evangelical hymns ever published; and we trust that it will increase the interest of public worship, give a higher inspiration to social and family services, and aid in private meditation and devotion. As it is published by the authority of the Church, and to meet the wants of the Church, and as the profits will be devoted to religious pur