Al Smith Hymn Histories CD/DVD’s Giveaway

Here’s a little personal hymn trivia for you.  What popular Christmas hymn that you probably sing every Christmas season was written by my great, great, great, great, great grandfather? (Read to the end of the post for the answer.)

Beacon Video is offering two (2) Raising Olives readers a gift pack of Hymn Histories by Dr. Al Smith.  Each pack will include:

  • Al Smith Treasury of Hymn Histories DVD
  • Al Smith Christmas Hymn Histories DVD
  • Al Smith Christmas Hymn Histories Audio CD

TREASURY OF HYMN HISTORIES – Dr. Al Smith

Dr. Alfred B. Smith, known to many as “Mr. Singsperation,” was often called the “Dean of Gospel Music.”  He was responsible for writing some of the songs we know as standards in the realm of gospel music.  “Surely Goodness and Mercy,” “My Father Planned It all,” “I Give You Freedom” (The Whippoorwill Song), and “For God So Loved the World” are just a few of his well-known pieces. He was an early pioneer in the arena of sacred recordings, and his influence toward the furtherance of good gospel music was remarkable.

In regard to the best-loved hymns, Dr. Smith was personal friends with some of the most famous composers and has done extensive research into the stories behind many of the great songs we sing in church every Sunday.

In this video recording you will see the inimitable Alfred B. Smith tell the intimate stories behind ten popular hymns and hear him sing those beloved songs.  Here is a one-of-a-kind keepsake treasure you’ll want to share with your loved ones.
The hymn histories in this collection are:
  • What a Friend We Have in Jesus
  • When the Lilies I Consider
  • God Leads Us Along
  • Overshadowed
  • My Faith Looks Up to Thee
  • Jesus Loves Me
  • It Is Well With My Soul
  • I Shall Know Him
  • The Robin and the Mouse
  • At Calvary

AL SMITH CHRISTMAS HYMN HISTORIES

This special Christmas DVD once again has Dr. Al Smith, the great storyteller, sharing the stories of Christmas hymns and then singing them for you as well!  Your family will enjoy this DVD over and over again!
Songs include:
  • O Little Town of Bethlehem
  • There’s A Song In the Air
  • Joy To The World
  • Silent Night! Holy Night!
  • Like A Choir of Silver Bells

How to enter:

  • Leave a comment on this post guessing which Christmas carol was written by my 5 greats grandfather (the first person to guess correctly will win an extra entry) and telling me your favorite Hymn.  

Extra entries:

  • Blog about this giveaway and leave a comment telling me you did.
  • Tweet about this giveaway and leave another comment

“Hark the Herald Angels Sing” was written by my 5 greats grandfather, Charles Wesley.  Congratulations Theresa, you get an extra entry for this giveaway.

For those of you trying to figure out based on dates, Charles was 59 years old when his son Samuel (whom our line comes from) was born.  I actually think that Samuel was also older when he had his son.  That type of stuff can really wreck those  30 year per generation averages.  So just for the record, I am young. :)

Giveaway will end Monday, December 21 at midnight and I’ll announce a winner on Tuesday.  Open to U.S. residents only.

If anyone orders “Al Smith Treasury of Hymn Histories”  (14.99) from Beacon Video and puts “Raising Olives” in the comments section they will send you the Christmas CD and DVD ($30 value) free.

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59 Responses to Al Smith Hymn Histories CD/DVD’s Giveaway
  1. JenT
    December 18, 2009 | 8:29 am

    Wow. I have no idea. I’m guessing Silent Night.

    [Reply]

  2. Amanda Sikes
    December 18, 2009 | 8:46 am

    Ummm, there are so many. Which one should I guess? Let’s try

    The First Noel?

    [Reply]

  3. MamaHen
    December 18, 2009 | 8:58 am

    I will guess O Holy Night!

    [Reply]

  4. bunny
    December 18, 2009 | 9:26 am

    I know! I know!

    [Reply]

  5. Sarah
    December 18, 2009 | 9:27 am

    I’m going to guess, O Little Town of Bethlehem. My favorite hymn though is “Man of Sorrows”

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  6. Erica
    December 18, 2009 | 9:40 am

    O Come All Ye Faithful is my guess, but my fav. is BE Still my soul or When Peace LIka a River

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  7. Tina
    December 18, 2009 | 9:48 am

    Ok, going out on a wire here, my guess is The Friendly Beasts, and one of my favorite hymns is It is Well with My Soul because I know the history on that one.

    [Reply]

    Tina Reply:

    I would like to change my guess to Go Tell it On the Mountain, can I do this?

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Yes, you may change your guess. :)

    [Reply]

    Tina Reply:

    Thank you :)

    [Reply]

  8. Tina
    December 18, 2009 | 9:52 am
  9. Debbie
    December 18, 2009 | 9:58 am

    I will guess “O Little Town of Bethlehem.” I think the age of the song is about right!

    [Reply]

  10. Kristen
    December 18, 2009 | 9:58 am

    I looked through the hymnbook to try to find a logical date and discovered that a LOT of Christmas carols were written by people born in the early-mid 1800′s. So, I’m just going to guess We Three Kings.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    And the fact that my 5 greats grandfather was 59 when he had his son Samuel did not help at all. :)

    [Reply]

  11. Debra
    December 18, 2009 | 10:00 am

    How about Joy to the World?

    I have no idea, but this product sounds amazing… I love music.

    [Reply]

  12. mumo6
    December 18, 2009 | 10:04 am

    Well, adding up the number of greats and counting backwards that many years limits the options some. Doing a little research in my “Great Songs of Faith” also helps. :-)

    “Silent NIght” Was written by Joseph Mohr in 1818, with music by the church organist (though actually for guitar accompaniment), Franz Grüber. Probably too early. Are you of Austrian descent?

    “The First Noel” is a traditional English carol, first published in its present form in 1833. Probably too early even for a publishing date, let alone when it was actually written. Sorry Amanda! :-)

    “O Holy NIght” seems also unlikely. Composed in 1847 by Adolphe Adam, for “Minuit, Chrétiens” the poem written in French by Placide Cappeau, it was translated into English by John Sullivan Dwight in 1855. The time period for “O Holy Night” does fit, but I wonder whether Kimberly is of French descent.

    I would guess either “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear” by Edmund Sears (1849) or “O LIttle Town of Bethlehem” by Phillips Brooks (1868) Given that I suspect you are younger than I am, Kimberly, I will settle on “O Little Town of Bethlehem.” (Which is my Mum’s favorite carol – another good reason to choose it!)

    And for my favorite hymn? Well, if it’s a Christmas carol you’re looking for I choose “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”. Love it! If it’s just a regular hymn you’re asking about, I would struggle mightily to choose, but would likely end up with “Be Thou My Vision.”

    and now I’ll sit down and shut up… :-)

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    I learned some things from reading your research. Thanks and good guesses.

    [Reply]

  13. mumo6
    December 18, 2009 | 10:11 am

    Oops – Sarah slipped in with “Little Town of Bethlehem while I was researching. May I change my guess to “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear”? :-)

    Debra – did you know that “Joy to the World” isn’t actually a Christmas Carol? It is actually about Christ’s return. Read the lyrics – it’s so amazingly powerful when you see it that way! Of course, we still sing it as a Christmas carol. As we regularly remind our children, Jesus didn’t come to BE BORN. That was just the very beginning of the amazing story, that culminates in what “Joy to the World” so beautifully celebrates. :-)

    [Reply]

  14. Kimberly @ Raising Olives
    December 18, 2009 | 10:12 am

    No correct guesses yet.

    My girls just said that no one will guess, but I have confidence in you all. I know there are a lot to choose from, but the one our ancestor wrote is common.

    I’m loving reading your responses! Thanks.

    [Reply]

  15. theresa
    December 18, 2009 | 10:23 am

    guessing Hark the Herald Angels sing. My fav is O Come All Ye Faithful.

    thanks!

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Congratulations Theresa! My 5 greats grandfather, Charles Wesley wrote “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”.

    This counts as your second entry! :)

    [Reply]

  16. Michelle
    December 18, 2009 | 10:25 am

    I am going to guess “Like a Choir of Silver Bells” because I do not think I have ever heard that one before and it does not appear in my 1991 Baptist Hymnal! It seems to be the most obscure one you have listed. :)

    The last commenter mentioned “Be Thou My Vision” which is my husband’s favorite hymn. I think mine is “Amazing Grace,” especially when played on bagpipes. :)

    [Reply]

  17. Tim Tinkel
    December 18, 2009 | 10:34 am

    I really have no idea. Maybe We Three Kings? I looked up the history and it’s from about the correct time period. I would love to be the winner though. Sounds great.

    Tim from the Crew

    [Reply]

  18. Hannah
    December 18, 2009 | 10:34 am

    My favorite Christmas hymn is “Oh come, oh come, Immanuel.” Could that be it? :)

    [Reply]

  19. Dawn
    December 18, 2009 | 11:13 am

    We have sung your 5 greats grandfather’s hymn many times this season. My son is learning to play it on the piano.

    My favorite hymn is Amazing Grace.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    :) Now you have to think of me each time you sing it!

    [Reply]

  20. Heather @ Marine Corps Nomads
    December 18, 2009 | 11:24 am

    I have several favorite hymns, but I’ll say O Holy Night for the purpose of this entry. ;) This sounds like a fabulous set.

    [Reply]

  21. Susan
    December 18, 2009 | 11:37 am

    This sounds like an awesome set! Favorite hymn: Ave Maria.

    [Reply]

  22. Erica
    December 18, 2009 | 11:56 am

    Oh Holy Night!

    [Reply]

  23. celee
    December 18, 2009 | 11:59 am

    It makes perfect sense that you’re Susannah Wesley’s great, great, great, great, great, great granddaughter! Now I don’t feel so bad:) Good mothering must be in your genes!

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    *blush* Now you just know what I SHOULD live up to. She was an amazing woman.

    [Reply]

  24. RG
    December 18, 2009 | 12:24 pm

    Wow, that is a neat piece of history to be tucked in your genes. My favorite hymn is And Can It Be, and my favorite Christmas song – don’t know if it is a carol per se – is Mary’s Boy Child, closely followed by O Holy Night.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    My great uncle did a lot of genealogy work and I’m thankful to know so much of our family history. Now I just need my mom to remember to get me a copy of the paper work, so I can see all of it myself.

    [Reply]

  25. Laura O
    December 18, 2009 | 1:02 pm

    I LOVE liturgical music and would be hard pressed to pick a favorite. I like It Is Well With My Soul from this particular collection.

    [Reply]

  26. Kimberly B
    December 18, 2009 | 1:21 pm

    My all time favorite is Silent Night, I actually used to sing this to my girls at bed time when they were little.

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  27. Virginia Lee Rogers
    December 18, 2009 | 2:42 pm

    It was very interesting to read all of these posts. I learned quite a bit. My favorite hymn is, It Is Well With My Soul. My favorite Christmas Carol is, O Holy Night. Thank you for the great giveaway!

    [Reply]

  28. Grace Munoz
    December 18, 2009 | 3:03 pm

    My absolute fav is Silent Night!! I just love the instrumental version because they have such a sweet sound and arrangement =)

    [Reply]

  29. Grace Munoz
    December 18, 2009 | 3:06 pm

    Just tweeted it! Thought it would be a great chance for everyone too =)

    [Reply]

  30. Kim
    December 18, 2009 | 3:37 pm

    My favorite hymn is When we all get to heaven. It has been so since I was a little girl!

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  31. Terri
    December 18, 2009 | 11:54 pm

    I have so many favorites!!!!! I love Christmas hymns and sing them all year.

    [Reply]

  32. Stephanie
    December 19, 2009 | 12:09 am

    I don’t know if it is my all-time favorite, probably not, but Power in the Blood immediately comes because my boys like it so much right now.

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  33. Christina Young
    December 19, 2009 | 9:13 am

    It is hard to pick my favorite. I like a lot of them, but I will pick “Whispering Hope”.

    [Reply]

  34. Cara
    December 19, 2009 | 2:21 pm

    Just as I am!

    [Reply]

  35. Tracy
    December 19, 2009 | 2:45 pm

    How cool you are a descendant of Charles Wesley!!!

    My favorties are normally O Holy Night and Joy to the World, but this year it has been O Come All Ye Faithful. I feel joyful and abundant this season and the “theme of this season” in my head and heart has been, O Come Let us Adore Him.

    He is SO Good!!
    Tracy

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    I’m very cool of course. :)

    He IS good.

    [Reply]

  36. Elizabeth
    December 19, 2009 | 9:05 pm

    Oh, I would love to win this give-away! I used to go to church with dear Dr. Al until he graduated to the heavenly choir! He was certainly a walking hymn history and such a treasure to know! My very favorite hymn is “Be Thou Exalted,” which just happens to be written by Al Smith and Fanny Crosby!! :) It was such a treasure to know this dear saint and to hear him sing often, until he became to sick (with cancer) to do so.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    How wonderful to be able to know Dr. Al Smith!

    [Reply]

  37. Kristen
    December 19, 2009 | 10:00 pm

    “Jesus Loves Me” It was the first song my daughter ever sang and she’s singing it for the first time solo tomorrow night at church. :)

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  38. Sherry
    December 20, 2009 | 2:43 pm

    What a nice giveaway.

    My favorite hymn (right now) is Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence.

    And since you’re interested in hymns, you might enjoy my top 100 hymns project from this last year.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Wow, what an amazing resource for hymns, thank you!

    [Reply]

  39. Sue O'Mullan
    December 21, 2009 | 1:53 am

    Hark the Herald Angels Sing?
    and I am not going to cheat and look up information on the internet… this is just a random guess and I am probably way off but I tried!!!!! Good luck and I loved your post!!!!!!

    [Reply]

    Sue O'Mullan Reply:

    I’m just happy I picked the right song!!! Woot woot!!!! Just a few hours late!!!!
    Congrats to the winner and I love this blog!!!!
    Thank you!

    [Reply]

  40. Mrs. White
    December 21, 2009 | 6:00 am

    My favorite hymn is:

    “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus”

    Thanks for this chance to win!

    [Reply]

  41. meclarks
    December 21, 2009 | 10:12 am

    Choose just 1 favorite hymn? I don’t think I can! A few of my favorites include “Be Thou My Vision”, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God”, and “Amazing Grace”, of course!

    [Reply]

  42. Hannah
    December 21, 2009 | 2:29 pm

    “Tis So sweet to Trust in Jesus” is my favorite hymn!

    [Reply]

  43. Nicki
    December 21, 2009 | 11:02 pm

    Are you talking about THE Charles Wesley? That is so cool! I have actually been formulating a post in my head about large families and Susanna Wesley, Duggars, some of my personal large-family-friends, and bloggers like you. My mom will love this bit of info!

    My favorite hymn is What a Friend We Have in Jesus.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Didn’t know I was so famous, did you? What a Friend We Have in Jesus is one of my favorites also.

    [Reply]

  44. Kimberlyb
    December 22, 2009 | 11:04 am

    Oh I forgot my favorite hymn is Be like the Sun, I would love to find this for my dd’s to sing in childrens chior, I used to sing it in chior when I was younger.

    [Reply]

  45. Christi
    December 22, 2009 | 1:52 pm

    I just love It is Well With My Soul!

    [Reply]

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