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It Was for Me

About the Song

Here you have it: the song that started it. Back in, oh, 1984-ish, a friend asked me to write something for her Relief Society lesson on the atonement. And thus, “It Was for Me” was born, along with an all-consuming, lifelong hobby. The song has morphed a bit, and, come to think of it, so has the hobby.

Some time in 2012 I got an itch to redo the piano part, so the version that Jacosa sings now has a new accompaniment. (It may work with the SATB, but I haven’t tried it.)

I tried (with varying success) to stick with a scriptural paraphrase for the verses, in order to tell the story very simply. The chorus expresses more of my personal feelings.

Spotify, Soundcloud (inc. free downloads)

Click the Soundcloud download icon to download the free track for personal use.

Recording featuring vocals by Jacosa Limutau:

Accompaniment track:

Recording featuring vocals by Katie Brandt:

Accompaniment track:

Apple Music, Amazon

These files may be copied/shared in any quantity in any physical format unless otherwise noted. They may not be re-sold or offered for download.



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


To the silent garden came Jesus with His disciples
To the garden of Gethsemane
Said He then
Sit ye here
Yonder will I go to pray
Tarry here and watch with me one hour

In dark Gethsemane, there prayed the Son of God
Who said, “Thy will be done,” and dared receive the bitter cup
And He, the sinless One, suffered all for sinful man
And His grief and pain
It was for me
In dark Gethsemane

Said He then
The hour is come
He is near who betrayeth me into the sinners’ hands
Crowned with thorns
Left alone and forsaken
Left alone the heavy cross He bore

Along the weary road, the way to Calvary
There walked the Lord of all
By death to heal the wounded heart and save the anguished soul
For the love of man to die
And the cross He bore
It was for me
The cross of Calvary

In dark Gethsemane
The cross at Calvary
There won the Lord of all the victory o’er death and hell
Transgression’s captive freed by the sacrifice of love
And the price He paid so willingly
It was for me

It was for me.

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  1. William Owens

    While on a mission in Cleveland Ohio in 1992, Sibling Group saying this song at a Fireside and I was awestruck. I saw them afterwards and begged and begged for a photocopy of it so that I could sing it at my homecoming and they were very reluctant because they did not know if the composer would approve of them sharing, I love the irony of that! Eventually I prevailed and they gave me a photocopy of a handwritten notation of this song with parallel harmonies written in for the phrases that include the heavy crossy bore, etc. Thank you for your sharing and beauty of your testimony!

  2. Sister Aolipa McClure

    I love this song, We are singing this song tonight for our Elijah Choir Easter Concert. I find myself humming this song.
    I am serving a full time Senior Mission here in Utah Salt Lake City Headquarters Mission. and I belong to the Mission Choir called the Elijah Choir. I serve here in the Church History Library.
    Mahalo for writing this song.

  3. Bill Wawro

    My brother Chris brought a part of this song home from his mission. I believe he met S. DeFord on his mission and had a hand written piano and lyrics copy. Chris would play and sing this song. I loved it. Years later after hearing a singing so many of Sally DeFord songs I came across this one. I had no idea at the time his story of this song, was the same artist and song writer I later knew as S. DeFord.
    This song has deep meaning to me,my brother has past, but I still remember the song he often sang. When I found it here again, I wept. Great song, great lyrics, great memories.

  4. eunice

    i always think, there no such person had ever written such a deep thought inside the lyrics , unless she is using her reasoning power to meditate the word of God. thankyou for willing to be used for the Glory of God..

  5. Jeff Pease

    Sally, my oldest daughter 38 just sang “it was for me” in St. George I’m 62 and drove down from Montana to spend some time in Roy UT with 5 grandsons, then on to St George for four more grandkids and listen to Holly.

    This song is amazing!!! My wife and I grew up singing and when our children surpassed us we have done very little.

    3 of 4 of our kids got music scholarships at Dixie State in music and the other went to USU as we were living in Logan at the time.

    Anyway, you would have been very proud to have heard Herzing your song! Thank you, thank you very much for allowing others to use your music, talents, and abilities. I was very proud dad and grandpa today as the tears flowed.

  6. Kendra Burton


    Our ward choir is singing your beautiful song, “It was for me” It is so hard to sing because the choir members keep becoming so emotional. Thank you for creating this beautiful gift. You are a blessing.



  7. Jeannie

    I love the words, and the flow of the song, and the feeling it leaves you as it continues is one of testimony and love for what the Savior did for us all. Thank you for your talents and for sharing this lovely song, which I will sing in our Sacrament on Easter.
    Jeannie W.

    • Laurie

      Thank you for testifying of the love that our Savior has for each of us through such beautiful music and lyrics. I am grateful to you for and sharing your love and talents so freely with all of us.

  8. J-TX

    Thank you, Sally. In my humble opinion, this is the most beautiful and important of your works. It touches me so, I have a hard time singing it.


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