The hymn most Americans know as Be Still My Soul took multiple contributors and multiple centuries to become what we know today. Katharina Von Schlegel wrote the text in 1752 in her native language of German. Just over 100 years later in 1855 Jane Borthwick translated the hymn into the English version so well known today. The tune most commonly used to sing this lyric is Finlandia written by Jean Sibelius between 1899-1900. Roughly 150 years, three authors from three different countries and three languages later, and we have one of the world's most beloved hymns.
Be Still My Soul - Lyrics
Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side;
bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
leave to thy God to order and provide;
in ev'ry change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heav'nly Friend
thro' thorny ways leads to a joyful end.
Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
to guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
all now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice, who ruled them while He dwelt below.
Be still, my soul: when dearest friends depart,
and all is darkened in the veil of tears,
then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
who comes to soothe thy sorrow and thy fears.
Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay
from His own fullness all He takes away.
Be still, my soul: the hour is hast'ning on
when we shall be forever with the Lord,
when disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul: when change and tears are past,
all safe and blessed we shall meet at last.