Joseph M. Scriven, a minister, wrote this poem in 1855. He wrote it to comfort his mother, who lived in Canada while he lived in Ireland. Scriven originally published the poem anonymously, but he received full credit in the 1880s. Though the hymn has other musical settings, Charles Crozat Converse composed this one in 1868. I hope you enjoy “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” on zither!