Mabel Jones Gabbott
Mabel Jones Gabbott was a poet and lyricist. In 1946, she responded to an invitation to submit hymn texts for a new hymn book for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and three of her texts were accepted. Since that time many of her poems and songs were published and notable composers like Crawford Gates, Robert Cundick, Michael F. Moody, and Darwin Wolford set her words to music. Her work is included in the 1985 Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: “Lord, Accept into Thy Kingdom” (236), “In Humility, Our Savior” (172), and “We Have Partaken of Thy Love” (155). She also wrote several songs for the Children’s Songbook, such as “Baptism,” “Did Jesus Really Live Again,” “Samuel Tells of the Baby Jesus,” “To Think about Jesus,” “Had I Been a Child,” “The Family,” and “He Sent His Son.”
In addition to writing poems and lyrics, she served a mission under Preston Nibley and then worked as a secretary for Elder LeGrand Richards. She was manuscript editor for The Children’s Friend magazine in 1957. She joined the staff of the Improvement Era in 1965 as editorial assistant and contributing writer. She also served on the Mutual Improvement (MIA) general board.
When the Church Music Committee began to revise and update the hymn book in 1973, she served as chairman of the text committee.
After her retirement in 1975, she continued to write and serve in the Church and in her community.
She was born on October 23, 1910, in Malad, Idaho. She and her husband, J. Donald Gabbott were the parents of five children. She died on February 13, 2004.