In Luke 18:6, we read the words of the Savior as He says to the people, “Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” There is perhaps nothing sweeter than the pure testimony of the Savior coming from the heart of an innocent child. This is evidenced in a recent video of 3-year-old Claire Ryann Crosby from Utah as she shares her sweet, tender testimony of the Savior she loves through singing her favorite hymn, Gethsemane by Roger and Melanie Hoffman.
For the past 35 years, Roger and Melanie Hoffman have devoted their time and talents to creating music. Roger reflects on their songwriting experiences by stating, “sometimes [our] only role in the songwriting process is “showing up” because the “songs (are) delivered by grace.” Recently, in time for the Easter season, Covenant Communications released a picture book which combines the lyrics to Gethsemane with the works of several LDS artists.
According to a 23 March 2016, Deseret News article, “Roger and Melanie Hoffman have a soft spot in their hearts for kids, and much of their music is catered toward helping children come unto Christ.” Melanie recalls how naturally the words to the hymn Gethsemane flowed as she began to write them. Roger commented, “(The song) was a gift; it was given.”
In January 2016, 3-year-old Claire Ryann Crosby became a YouTube sensation when her rendition of “Part of Your World” from Disney’s The Little Mermaid went viral. Claire’s father, Dave, who writes music for commercials and movies, told KSL.com, “A few months ago, I was paying for an oil change, and when I turned around [Claire] was singing Little Mermaid in the lobby while everyone had their phones out recording her.” He also mentions that not only is Claire’s sense for pitch as a toddler impressive, but she also has an incredible memory which allows her to memorize the words to songs with very little help. As of late March 2016, the video has garnered over 8 million views.
On Monday, 21 March 2016, Claire returned to YouTube with her inspirational cover of Gethsemane. The video includes clips from the Bible videos produced by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A post on Claire’s Facebook page introduces the song, “A few weeks ago, Claire’s grandma introduced her to this song. Claire loved it and asked to hear it on loop for days. Before we knew it our house was filled with her tiny testimony singing this song as she played, ate, and as she fell asleep at night.” Her father helped to produce the video which has already been viewed over 83,000 times.
Here at Latter-day Saint Musicians, we are sure that you will be blessed by this precious little girl’s testimony through this inspirational song about the Savior’s final hours and His Infinite Atonement. We echo Claire Ryann Crosby’s testimony that Jesus Christ, our Lord, Savior, and Redeemer lives! We wish for all of you, Happy Easter!