Behind the Hymn: Pass Me Not O Gentle Savor

Pass Me Not O Gentle Savor is another popular hymn by prolific and beloved hymn writer Fanny Crosby.

Fanny Crosby

Crosby had been blind since she was six weeks old, but wrote over 8,000 songs in her lifetime.

One evening, Fanny Crosby was invited to speak to a group of prisoners at the state prison and heard one of the men say  “Good Lord! Do not pass me by!” Do not turn your back on me. Do not ignore me, forget me, neglect me.

Fanny told that she was so touched by the pleas of these men that she could not get the thought of them out of her mind; indeed she said, I wrote the lines with the men’s pleading wail still in my ears.

She went home that night and wrote all four verses of the hymn.  She gave the lyrics to Doane who wrote the melody.

The song was written in 1868 and first appeared in print in the 1870 Songs of Devotion.

The hymn gained international recognition when introduced by Dwight L. Moody and Ira D. Sankey during their London revivals. According to Dr. Young, “This is Crosby’s first hymn to win worldwide acclaim.”