These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.@Hebrews 11:13

Will­iam H. Dra­per, 1894. Dra­per wrote this hymn for the re­op­en­ing of the Ab­bey Church, Shrews­bu­ry, Eng­land, af­ter its res­tor­a­tion.

Dra­per Üt­ting­en man­u­script, 1754 (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
William H. Draper (1855–1933)

In our day of thanksgiving
One psalm let us offer
For the saints who before us
Have found their reward;
When the shadow of death
Fell upon them, we sorrowed,
But now we rejoice
That they rest in the Lord.

In the morning of life,
And at noon, and at even,
He called them away
From our worship below;
But not till His love,
At the font and the altar,
Had girt them with grace
For the way they should go.

These stones that have echoed
Their praises are holy,
And dear is the ground
Where their feet have once trod;
Yet here they confessed
They were strangers and pilgrims,
And still they were seeking
The city of God.

Sing praise, then, for all who
Here sought and here found Him,
Whose journey is ended,
Whose perils are past;
They believed in the Light;
And its glory is round them,
Where the clouds of earth’s sorrows
Are lifted at last.