About: The Story of This Little Tongan Hymn Book (THB) App

One Sunday I went to the Tongan Uniting Church. Unlike palangi churches where they hand out hymn books as you walk in, you normally have to bring your own hymn book to a Tongan service, or hope that you can borrow one from whoever you sit next to.

When the singing began, I pulled out my mobile to do a quick search for an online version, but there wasn't one. I found myself staring over the shoulders of the person in front of me at their hymn book because I didn't have my own. That was where the idea of creating an online version came from.

After thinking about it for a little while, there were three features I wanted to implement. Firstly, you can search for the hymn by it’s hymn number. Secondly, a more useful feature for Tongan hymns is the ability to search by the first line of the hymn. At Tongan functions, when someone starts singing a hymn (hua hiva), and you don't know it by heart but have a hymn book, you pay attention to the first line so you can use it to quickly look up its corresponding hymn number and page reference in the index.

The final feature that I think will be useful, especially for those in Tonga, is the ability to use the app while offline, thereby saving on precious data costs.


If you find mistakes in the hymns, please help out by sending me an email with the corrections. I'll make sure to include your name in the list of contributors below.


Ofa atu,