Scripture Verse

I have heard thy prayer and thy supplication, that thou hast made before Me: I have hallowed this house, which thou hast built, to put My name there for ever; and Mine eyes and Mine heart shall be there perpetually. 1 Kings 9:3


James Montgomery (1771–1854)
National Portrait Gallery


Words: James Mont­go­me­ry, 1821.

Music: Mu­nus John B. Cal­kin, 1872 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Cal­kin (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),

John B. Calkin (1827–1905)

Origin of the Hymn

The foun­da­tion stone of St. George’s Church, Shef­field…was laid on the day of the co­ro­na­tion of George IV, July 19, 1821.

On that day Mont­go­me­ry pub­lished in his Ir­is news­pa­per a lead­ing ar­ti­cle on [Na­po­le­on] Bon­a­parte, who died on the 5th of the pre­vi­ous May. Mont­go­me­ry’s orig­in­al ma­nu­script of that ar­ti­cle and a set of the co­ro­na­tion med­als, and other us­u­al me­mo­ri­als, were placed in a glass jar un­der the foun­da­tion stone (Mem­oirs, iii. p. 241).

This hymn was com­posed for the oc­ca­sion; was sung dur­ing the cer­e­mo­ny, and was print­ed in the Ir­is of Tues­day, July 24,1821. It was in­clud­ed in Mont­go­me­ry’s Chris­tian Psalm­ist, 1825, No. 475, and in his Orig­in­al Hymns, 1853, No. 301, and in both in­stanc­es head­ed On Op­en­ing a Place of Wor­ship.

Julian, p. 691


Lord of Hosts, to Thee we raise
Here a house of prayer and praise;
Thou Thy people’s hearts prepare
Here to meet for praise and prayer.

Let the living here be fed
With Thy Word, the heavenly bread,
Here, in hope of glo­ry blessed,
May the dead be laid to rest.

Here to Thee a temple stand,
While the sea shall gird the land;
Here reveal Thy mercy sure,
While the sun and moon endure.

Hallelujah!—earth and sky
To the joyful sound reply;
Hallelujah!—hence as­cend
Prayer and praise till time shall end.