The BYU Men’s Chorus, led by BYU School of Music associate professor and choral conductor Rosalind Hall, released a new arrangement titled “Baptism Hymn (for Mollie)” to the missionary album Set Apart: Beloved Missionary Hymns on Dec. 2, 2016.
Originally released in 2013, Set Apart was produced with the intention to support the surge in missionary effort that was occurring at the time, due to the announcement of lowering the age to 18 for outgoing elder missionaries, and 19 for sisters.
“As we prepared the album, I became more aware than ever of the special connection that the Men’s Chorus has with missionary work,” Hall said. “Almost every member in the choir has either recently returned from a mission or is just about to leave, so their passion for this effort is almost tangible.”
The Men’s Chorus includes 147 returned missionaries, representing service in 42 countries. The remainder of the group either have their mission calls in hand or are waiting to receive one.
“I committed that each Christmas we would gift the world with another free download that would be especially uplifting for missionaries,” Hall further commented. “So far, we have added three new songs to the original 10.”
“Baptism Hymn (for Mollie)” is a combination of two songs from the LDS Children’s Songbook, “I Like to Look for Rainbows” and “Baptism.” Arranged by chorus member David Ross, the number was presented as a surprise gift for Hall’s niece, Mollie Pulman, who was baptized in March 2016.
Pulman arrived in Provo from Wales in October 2015 to study at Utah Valley University. She loved hearing the Men’s Chorus and came to nearly every rehearsal for the entire school year and became well-known by the choir. When she decided to be baptized, Ross wrote the song and arranged for members of the choir to attend her baptism and sing it as part of the service. More than 100 men from the choir participated.
“As well as being a particularly meaningful song for missionaries, this piece has special memories for me and for the Men’s Chorus,” Hall stated. “We are delighted to now be able to share it with the world, and hope it will bring a special spirit that touches the hearts of all who listen.”
“Baptism Hymn (for Mollie)” will be made available for free listening and download at setapartalbum.byu.edu. The score will also be offered online through Holy Sheet Music.
Production of the track is made possible by recording engineer Jeff Carter and post-production manager Troy Sales.
Writer: Preston Williamson