Julian's account is as follows:
John Samuel Bewley Monsell, L.l.D., son of Thomas Bewley Monsell, Archdeacon of Londonderry, was born at St. Colombs, Londonderry, March 2nd. 1811, and educated at Trinity College, Dublin. (B.A. 1832, L.l.D. 1856). Being ordained in 1834, he was successively Chaplain to Bishop Mant, Chancellor of the diocese of Connor, Rector of Ramoan, Vicar of Egham, diocese Worcester, and Rector of St. Nicholas, Guildford. He died in consequence of a fall from the roof of his church, which was in the course of re-building, April 9th.1875.
He wrote about 300 hymns of which one fourth are in common use.
One of his hymns, "Awake, glad soul, awake, awake" was written according to the preface to his 'Spiritual Songs', amid the orange and olive groves of Italy during a winter spent (for the sake of his health) upon the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.
In 'Songs of Grace and Glory' compiled by Charles B. Snepp, L.l.M. Vicar of Perry Barr, 1872, Monsell has a hymn to the Trinity, "Mighty Father! Blessed Son!" Snepp divided the hymn into three parts and added this note. "Note the symbolic form; three lines harmonising in each verse, three verses in each division, three divisions making one hymn".
Monsell's hymn in 'Spiritual Songs' is no. 73, "On our way rejoicing as we homeward move". It was first included by Mr. Hocking in 1928. According to Julian this hymn appeared in Monsell's Hymns of Love and Praise, 1863. It was re- written by him in 1873, the principal change being the addition of the first four lines from stanza one as a refrain to each stanza. These changes were made to adapt the hymn as a Processional.