Story Behind the Hymn, “Hymn of Promise”
Here is the story behind the hymn, “Hymn of Promise”. Behind the success of the song Hymn of Promise lies a tragic story as it was first known to be a dedication song in a funeral ceremony.
The hymn of promise was written in 1934 as an Anthem by Natalie Sleeth. It was written, when she was pondering ‘the whole reawakening of the world that happens every spring’, after a friend drew her attention to T S Eliot, ‘In the end is my beginning’.
She later dedicated it to her husband who had been diagnosed with cancer.
Unfortunately for him, his cancer was terminal as there was no effective treatment at that time.
This became very painful for both as Natalie Sleeth slowly witnessed cancer completely taking over her husband’s body with nothing to stop it.
By the time Ronald Sleeth had started to feel that his time in the world was almost up he made one final request to his wife Natalie Sleeth.
The request was that the Hymn of Promise that was originally written as an anthem be dedicated to him during his funeral procession.
Even though this song is connected with this tragic background story it still remains one of the most popular catholic songs.
It has been included in various church hymnals.
To many people, The Hymn of Promise is one of the most beautiful catholic songs. It is sung in many churches around the world.
It is accompanied by a simple and lovely melody that can easily captivate the ears of the listeners.
The entire tune is very relaxing, and it brings peace to those who listen to this song.
Sometimes it even gives the listeners tears since it is also played on certain occasions such as funeral ceremonies wherein the lyrics of the song help the families and friends remember the happy memories with their deceased friend or loved one.
Who Was Natalie Sleeth?
Natalie Allyn Sleeth (née Wakeley) was born on 29th October 1930 in Evanston, Illinois, United Kingdom.
Her love for music started at a very young age. She started learning the piano at the tender age of four.
She eventually earned a BA in Music Theory at Wellesley College in Massachusetts.