Author of “lovely and popular” Wesleyan hymns identified by initials

Vakai ki he konga taupotu taha ki lalo 'o e pēsi' ni 'oku 'i ai ha fakamatala faka-Tonga ai 'a Dr. Nigel Statham ki he ongoongo ni.

An Australian man says he has solved the mystery of a set of initials that appear in the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga hymn book.

Nigel Statham, who worked as a translator for the church from 1970-82, said he had long  been intrigued  by the initials CPWB that appeared what he called “eight of the most lovely and popular hymns in the book.”

The hymns are numbers  624, 628, 629, 630, 631, 635, 642 and 651 .

Statham said the mystery was solved when he found the name C.P. Walkden-Brown in the Tupou College 150th Anniversary book and realised he was the author of those hymns.

Walkden-Brown was appointed a missionary to Tonga in 1903 to replace Dr Moulton as Principal of Tupou College. He was chairman of the Tonga District from 1906-1908, returning to Australia in 1908 due to ill health.

He was married to Ethel Marie, a daughter of a Methodist minister, Reverend Matthew Maddern. After Walkden-Brown returned to Australia he ministered to Methodist churches in several towns in New South Wales.

He was chairman of the Goulburn District in 1922 and chairman of the Third Sydney District from 1925-1926. He retired from the ministry in 1934 and died the following year.

His memorial service as attended by Prince Taufa`ahau, the future king of Tonga as well as 43 Methodist ministers and members of other churches.

Statham said Walkden-Brown was a fine preacher and musician and was the pianist of the Methodist Conference Ministerial Choir for many years.

“That he was a person of refined spirituality is clear from the hymns he wrote, which are no less extraordinary in their poetic and spiritual merit than the best of Dr Moulton’s hymns,” staham said.

“It is astonishing that he was able to write such hymns after being in Tonga for such a short time. No wonder he has been called a genius.”

Walden-Brown’s family had a long involvement with the Pacific, particularly in Papua New Guinea and Fiji.

His nephew Douglas Walkden-Brown was a lay Methodist missionary principal of the Navuso Agricultural College in Fiji from 1949 till 1960.

He eventually becoming a Fiji citizen and served first as Minister of Natural Resources and then as Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forests.

The main points

  • An Australian man says he has solved the mystery of a set of initials that appear in the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga hymn book.
  • Nigel Statham, who worked as a translator for the church from 1970-82, said he had long been intrigued  by the initials CPWB that appeared what he called “eight of the most lovely and popular hymns in the book.”
  • Statham identified the initials as belonging to C.P. Walkden-Brown, a former principal of Tupou College.

1 COMMENT

  1. Ko hai ‘a CPWB ‘i he Tohi Himi ‘a e Siasi Uesilianá?

    Ko e fa‘u ‘e Dr. Nigel Statham, Wollongong, NSW, Australia, 13 July 2017

    Talu ‘eku ngäue ki he Siasi Uesiliana Tau‘atäina o Tongá mo ‘eku fifili ki he mata‘itohi CPWB ‘i he himi fakavaleloto mo manakoa ‘e ni‘ihi ‘i he tohi himí, ko e fika 624, 628, 629, 630, 631, 635, 642 mo e, 651. Pea faka‘uta ange ki he‘eku fiefia ‘i he‘eku fakatokanga‘i hifo ‘i he Tohi Fakamanatu ‘o e Ta‘u 150 ‘o e Kolisi ko Tupoú ‘a e hingoa ko Charles Piddington Walkden-Brown na‘á ne fetongi ‘a Toketä Molitoni he Pule Ako ‘i he Kolisí ko Tupoú mo Sea he Vahefonua Tonga ‘o e Siasi Metotisí he 1906-1908. Tä ko ia ‘a e punake na‘á ne fatu ‘a e himi ‘e valu ko ení.

    Na‘á ku fekumi ai ki he hisitölia ‘o e misinalé ni ‘i ha ngaahi nusipepa Metotisi fuoloa ‘oku tauhi ‘e he Siasi Fakatahataha ‘o ‘Aositelëliá, mo ha ngaahi tohi kehe pë, na‘a lava ke ki‘i fä‘atä ange ‘eku ‘ilo ki he tangatá ni. Ko e ola eni ‘o ‘eku fekumí :
    Ko CPWB.

    Na‘e fanau‘i ‘a CPWB ‘e ha ongo mätu‘a Metotisi ‘i he ta‘u 1875 ‘i Kiama, ko e kolo ‘i he feitu‘u matätahi fakatonga ‘o Niusauele ‘oku ofi mai ki he kolo ‘okú ma nofo ai mo Melenaité, ‘a Wollongong. Ko ‘ene tangata’eikí, ko John Walkden-Brown, na‘e hiki mei Pilitänia ki ‘Aositelëlia ‘i he 1859 pea fakanofo faifekau Metotisi ‘i he 1887 ‘i he Kolonia Kuinisilaní. Ko ‘ene tangata’eikí ko John Brown pea ko ‘ene fine’eikí ko
    Frances Walkden, pea na‘e fakataha‘i hona hingoa fakafämilí, pea talu mei ai mo `enau hingoa fakafämili’aki ‘a e Walkden-Brown. Ko e faifekau ‘ofeina ‘aupito mo mohu talëniti ‘a John ‘i he ngaahi potungäue lahi na‘e ngäue ai, ‘o kau ai mo e vahefonua Kiama. Ko e hingoa papi hono ua ‘o CPWB, ‘a e Piddington, ko e hingoa ia ‘o e faifekau Metotisi ‘iloa ‘i he ngaahi mu‘aki ‘aho ‘o ‘Aositeleliá, ko WJK Piddington na‘e kau hono fakaului ‘a e tangata’eiki ‘a CPWB ‘i he kalasi ‘aho. Ko e hingoa fakatenetene ‘o CPWB ko ‘Pid’. Na‘e toko ua ‘a e tuofäfine ‘o CPWB, ko Mabel mo Lucy, pea tokoua mo hono ongo tehina, ko Fred mo
    Harold.

    Na‘e faifekau Metotisi ‘a Fred ‘i he ngaahi kolo lahi ‘i Niusauele. Ko e foha ‘o Feleti, ko Douglas Walkden-Brown, ko e Puleako misinale Metotisi ‘o e kolisi ngoue ko Navuso ‘i Fisi he ta‘u 1949-1960. Na‘e hili ia peá ne liliu kakai ‘i Fisi ‘o faama ai, pea faifai pea fakafofonga Falealea ‘i he Pule‘anga ‘o Ratu Mara, ‘o
    iku ki hono fakanofo Minisitä Koloa ‘o Natula, pea toe Minisitä Ngoue, Toutai mo e Vaotätä. Na‘e fakalängilangi‘i ‘e he Kuini Pilitänia he 1961 ‘aki hono MBE. Na‘á ne mälolö he 2013 kuo ta‘u 92. Ko e tokoua ‘o Douglas, ko Bruce, nae pule ‘i he Potungäue Ako ‘a e Siasi Metotisi ‘i Päpua Niukini. Ko hono tuofefine, ko Nancy, na‘e ngäue fakamisinale mo ia ki Päpua Niukini, pea hiki mo hono hoá ki Bulaweyo ‘i Zimbabwe ‘o faiako misinale ‘i he ongo ako‘anga ‘iloa. Ko e foha lahi ‘o Douglas, ko David, ko e toketä sino ia ‘i Pilisipeini. Ko e hokó, ko Stephen, ko e Palöfesa Animal Science ‘i he ‘Univësiti ‘o New England, Niusauele. Ko hono foha si‘i taha, ko Andrew, ko e tangata pisinisi nofo fonua ‘i Fisi. Ko hono tuofefine, ko Jennifer, na‘e faiako ‘i he ‘Univësiti ‘o e Pasifiki Tongá ‘i Suva, Fisi.

    Na‘e ako ‘a CPWB ‘i he Kolisi Tohitapu Niuingatoni ‘i Senë (na‘e toki hoko ko Newington College). Na‘e hilifaki nima ‘e he Siasi Metotisí ‘i he ta‘u 1900, pea faifai pea fili ia ke Pule Ako he Kolisi Ako Fakafaifekau ‘o ‘Aositelëlia, ko St Colombus ‘i Wangaratta, Vikatölia. Na‘á ne ngäue fakafaifekau ‘i he ongo kolo
    Niusauele ko Glen Innes mo Mudgee, pea toki fakanofo ko e misinale ki Tonga‘i he 1903, ko e fetongi ‘o Toketä Molitoni. Me‘apango na‘e mahamahaki ‘o ne foki ai ki ‘Aositelëlia he 1908. Ko hono fetongí ‘a Roger Page (Misa Peesi).

    Ko e hoa ‘o CPWB ko Ethel Marie, ko e ‘öfefine ‘o e faifekau Metotisi ko Matthew Maddern. Na‘e tokotolu ‘ena fanau tangata, ko Clive, John mo Charles, pea tokotolu mo ‘ena fänau fefine, ko Miriam, Lorna mo Leone. Na‘e faifekau Metotisi ‘a Clive.

    Ko ‘ene foki ko ia ki ‘Aositelëliá, ‘o ngäue fakafaifekau ki he he ngaahi kolo Niusauele, ko Yass, Young,
    Orange, Goulburn, Homebush, Croydon Park and Lindfield. Na‘á ne toe Sea he Vahefonua Goulburn ‘i he 1922 pea Sea ‘i he Vahafonua fika 3 ‘o Seneé he 1925-1926. Na‘á ne mälölö he ngäué ‘i he ta‘u 1934 pea pekia he 1935. Na‘e kau ha kau faifekau Metotisi ‘e toko fängofulu-mä-tolu ‘i hono malanga fakamanatú, mo ha kau faifekau mo e kakai ‘iloa mei he ngaahi siasi kehe, kae‘uma‘ä ‘a Pilinisi Täufa‘ähau, ‘a ia ko ‘Ene ‘Afio ko Täufa‘ähau Tupou IV.

    Ko CPWB ko e faifekau talëniti malanga. Na‘e tä piano, ‘i he ngaahi ta‘u lahi he Hiva ‘a e kau Faifekau he ngaahi konifelenisi ‘a e Siasi Metotisí. ‘Oku hä sino ‘a e taumama’o fau ‘ene mo‘ui fakalaumälié ‘i he‘ene fatu himí, he ‘oku alea ai mo Toketä Molitoní he fakanoaloto mo fakapunake hono mälié. Ko e me‘a fakaofo mo‘oni ‘ene fatu himí, he ko e ta‘u si‘i pë ‘ene nofo ‘i Tonga mo hono fämilí. Tä ne‘ine‘i lau ia ko e tu‘umo‘unga faka‘atamai’.

    Ko Rev.Charles Walkden- Brown mo hono hoá ko Ethel mo ‘ena fänaú ‘i he 1912. Mei to‘ohema: Ko Lorna, Charles, Clive,
    Ethel mo e pëpë, John mo Miriam.
    Na‘e toki fanau‘i ‘amui ange ‘a Leone (Biddy) mo Charles(Chilla).

    Ko e fa‘u mei he:

    The Cyclopedia of Tonga, 19070
    Mervyn Walkden-Brown, My Four Families, 1983.
    Tupou College Sesquicentenary History 1866-2016

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