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Abide With Me

About the Song

Words by Henry F. Lyte (adapted); Melody by William H Monk (adapted); Arranged by Sally DeFord

Henry F. Lyte wrote several more stanzas for this beautiful hymn than are usually sung. I have chosen to include one of these verses (with a slight modification in tense) since I love the hope and confidence it expresses.

The obbligato is written for C-instrument. You’ll notice that part of it is omitted in the duet recording. The notes that are omitted are included as optional in the score. In 2016 I had one of those “what was I thinking” moments, and edited the accompaniment to make it more playable–both versions are still available. I also added some alternative notes to the men’s parts to keep the range below middle C.  Where these appear, use either note, not both.

Spotify, Soundcloud (inc. free downloads)

Click the Soundcloud download icon to download the free track for personal use. Recording featuring vocals by James Loynes:

Accompaniment track:

Recording featuring vocals by Stephanie Boyd:

Accompaniment track:

Recording featuring vocals by Ben Jack and Angie Jack May:

Accompaniment track:


(Video provided to YouTube by outside parties may contain ads that may be skipped after a few seconds.)


Abide with me! Fast falls the eventide
The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide
When other helpers fail and comforts flee
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me

I need thy presence every passing hour
What but thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who like thyself my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me

I fear no foe with thee at hand to bless
Ills have no weight and tears no bitterness
Death has no sting, the grave no victory*
I triumph still if thou abide with me


*Author’s original words are, “Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?”

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  1. Jana Hall

    I’m not seeing a difference between the simplified version and the original arrangement. Is there a simplified version? We would like to sing this for a funeral this weekend but need an easier piano part since we don’t have a lot of time to practice

  2. Gretchen R

    What an absolutely beautiful arrangement of this wonderful hymn! Perfect for my alto range. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. Sarah

    This is a really beautiful arrangement of this song and the interplay between the choir and the “Instrument in C” shows some really nice musical writing!

  4. Jonh Rassel S. Garcia

    This is one of my favorite religious song because it touches my spirit. It appears to be in my Top 10 religious music. May I use your music Abide With Me for my religious vlog? Your music is so perfect.

  5. John O Cochran

    So old and yet so current for our times…Beautiful

  6. Brennan Maynard

    Mr. Henry Francis Lyte wrote this as he lay dying of tuberculosis. He lived for only three weeks after its completion

    Abide with me, fast falls the eventide;
    The darkness deepens: Lord, with me abide!
    When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
    Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

    Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day.
    Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away:
    Change and decay in all around I see;
    O Thou, who changest not, abide with me.

    Not a brief glance I beg! a passing word;
    But as Thou dwell’st with Thy disciples, Lord:
    Familiar, condescending, patient, free.
    Come, not to sojourn, but abide with me.

    Come not in terrors, as the King of kings,
    But kind and good with healing in Thy wings–
    Tears for all woes, a heart for ev’ry plea,
    Come, Friend of sinners! thus abide with me.

    Thou on my head in early youth didst smile;
    And, though rebellious and perverse meanwhile,
    Thou hast not left me oft’ as I’ve left Thee,
    On to the close, O Lord, abide with me.

    I need Thy presence ev’ry passing hour!
    What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
    Where is death’s sting? where, grave, thy victory?
    I triumph still if Thou abide with me.

    Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes.
    Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies!
    Heav’n’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
    In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

  7. Ken

    My daughter and I sang a duet at a funeral this past weekend. The arrangement and accompaniment was absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much!

  8. Malin Shepherd

    I am doing a duet with another member of our ward at a funeral this weekend. Your music always seems to have the right spirit, for all occasions.

  9. Linda Purnell

    You’re amazing Sally!! I am looking for hymn arrangements for clarinet. I’m quite sure you’ve done some but how do I search for that? Thanks so much!!

  10. Dave Bates

    A neighbor and I performed this song today with my wife playing the violin. It was a very spiritual experience for all involved. Thank you for sharing your talents and inspiring others to do the same!

  11. Jennifer

    Thank you so much for your songs and the accompaniments! I really appreciate all you do! I would love to see even more hymn arrangements. I love to give some of these songs to my voice students. Thank you!

  12. Anna

    Thanks for this awesome arrangemnet.

  13. Ronalee Heywood

    Very beautiful! The vocalist sang so smoothly and with feeling! I felt love and peace for all of God’s children as I listened to this arrangement sung with the accompaniment! Thank you!

  14. Matthew

    I love your style, insight and the inspiration you receive to make music old music that i have loved, NEW to me. It is truly a blessing and I enjoy hearing, and performing your music. I’m singing this one today at Church.

    Thank you,

  15. Anon

    This is one of the best pieces I have ever met and I am grateful for this yet a new version, GOD bless you always

  16. Celeste

    Beautiful arrangement, thanks for yet another beautiful song!


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