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Braille Hymnals: A Big Request

Braille music hymnals are a big request in the Music Section — big as in the amount of requests we receive, and literally big in size, often expanding over numerous volumes. Part of my job is to digitize them, and I can say without hesitation that braille hymnals take the cake as some of the largest sized music books we have in our stacks.

View inside church

Photo of church pews and stained glass window inside St. Francis de Sales Church. Oakland, California.

You may be wondering what hymnals we have? Here is a condensed list from several denominations and organizations of faith:

To access items that are available from BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download), a patron must be a registered user through a NLS cooperating library. Please contact us if you have questions.

Anglican Hymn Book. Words only. 5 volumes, BRM 29119.

Baptist Hymnal. Words only. 12 volumes, BRM 32625, available on BARD.

The Book of Hymns: Official Hymnal of the United Methodist Church. Words and music. 8 volumes, BRM 23958, available on BARD.

Christian Science Hymnal. Words only. 1 volume, BRM 07499.

Church Hymnal. Words only. 7 volumes, BRM 35612, available on BARD.

The English Hymnal, Church of England. Words only. 9 volumes, BRM 23809.

Evangel Hymnbook: Favorite Hymns and Gospel Songs. Words and music. 2 volumes, BRM 28733, available on BARD.

The Hymnal 1982: According to the use of the Episcopal Church. Words only. 15 volumes, BRM 29192 available on BARD.

Hymnal and Liturgies of the Moravian Church. Words only. 4 volumes, BRM 26033.

The Lutheran Hymnal, authorized by the synods constituting the Evangelical Lutheran Synodical Conference of North America. Words only. 4 volumes, BRM 25796.

The New Century Hymnal, United Church of Christ. Words only. 19 volumes, BRM 35878, available on BARD.

Pilgrim Hymnal. Words only. 8 volumes, BRM 35623, available on BARD.

The Presbyterian Hymnal: Hymns, Psalms, and Spiritual Songs. Words only. 18 volumes, BRM 34629 available on BARD.

Service Book and Hymnal of the Lutheran Church in America. Words only. 4 volumes, BRM 24219, available on BARD.

The St. Gregory Hymnal and Catholic Choir Book. Words and music. 9 volumes, BRM 30992.

Trinity Hymnal, Presbyterian. Words only. 8 volumes, BRM 35200, available on BARD.

The United Methodist Hymnal. Words only. 7 volumes, BRM32363.

Photo of men and women singing hymns, 1941.

Photo of men and women singing hymns, 1941.

These of course are not all the hymnals we have in our collection. Some of our books are more manageable in size and only contain a select number of hymns from a particular hymnal. Making items available electronically through BARD has also eliminated the issue of physical size. Please let us know if you are looking for something in particular.






  1. Ken Board
    April 27, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    I am a missionary to Japan. One of the churches with which I work is the Amagi Bible Baptist Chruch. The pastor of the church is blind. He would like the Baptist Hymnal in Braille. Please send information.

    • Amanda Smith
      May 1, 2015 at 2:52 pm

      Thank you for reading our blog and commenting. I will be in contact with you. To benefit other readers who may have a similar question or live abroad, here I would like to briefly mention the requirements for receiving Music Services. For individuals residing here in the United States, they must first be registered with a cooperating National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped library in their state of residence. To receive services abroad, an individual must be a U.S. citizen and registered with a NLS cooperating state/regional library. We can help with any questions you may have about this process, so please do not hesitate to ask.

  2. Ken Board
    May 6, 2015 at 11:52 pm

    I would like to purchase a Braille version of the Baptist Hymnal for the blind pastor of a Baptist Church in Japan. I would appreciate any information you could share with me.

    • Amanda Smith
      May 7, 2015 at 9:59 am

      Absolutely, this is often a request we get from our patrons. They would like to indefinitely keep items. When possible we provide information about outside resources that are available, but NLS does not sell materials. I will contact you through direct email. Thank you!

  3. CS Campbell
    June 24, 2015 at 10:49 pm

    I’m the preaching minister and I have a member that is blind that is in need of a braille song book. Please provide the information for purchase. Thank you so very much

  4. Dacia Cole
    January 14, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    I am a member of an American Baptist church and we use the “Celebration Hymnal” and I believe it’s published by word press. I wanting to know if you have that one in braille or know where I can get it in braille? I am one of two blind members.

    • Amanda Smith
      January 14, 2016 at 2:10 pm

      Thank you for commenting, Dacia. NLS does not have a braille transcription of the “Celebration Hymnal,” and is unaware of its availability elsewhere. I would be happy to speak with you about your interest in locating a copy. Please give the Music Section a call, 800-424-8567 ext. 2. Thank you!

  5. Lucy Painter
    February 23, 2016 at 4:40 pm

    Our UCC church in Sarasota, FL has a blind couple who read Braille. I am looking for a copy of the New Century Hymnal for them but an not registered with BARD and have no idea how to do that, or if need to to order this book. Can you help me?

  6. Nancy
    June 2, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    I received a call from someone asking where they could donate four Braille hymnals they have. Would you take these?

    • Amanda Smith
      June 7, 2016 at 8:24 am

      Thank you for commenting, Nancy. Have them give us call, 800-424-8567 ext. 2. We would certainly be interested in knowing what they have.

  7. Chela Robles
    July 28, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    While I find it fascinating about the hymnals and how popular it is, I have a request as a trumpeter I always find something new only to discover it is not accessible in some way. I eventually resort to getting printed books with CD accompaniment where in jazz or whatever music style of choice, the instrument of your chosing, in my case, the trumpet, will play on one track, and then the other track will contain just everything else after the track with the trumpet, in most cases. I do know how to read braille music, but what I like to play doesn’t show on your catalog for the trumpet section because I mainly play jazz. I recently looked however for a method book series by a trumpeter who is famous and you might have heard of him and his music, Cuban trumpeter Arturo Sandoval, but alas I haven’t found it. I’d like to request you guys braille it and let me know once production starts and once it is officially released for download via email.
    The series can be found on Amazon.
    It is called Playing techniques & performance studies for trumpet and there are three volumes and I’d like to have access to all of them eventually. Amazon says that they come with CD but I just recently purchased them and received them and much to my surprise, they didn’t come with the CD’s. How unfortunate for me! So I was wondering if there is anything I need to provide? I could email you but I don’t know the email address to write to in order to send the direct Amazon links, so I’ll list the book titles and their respective ISBN’s.
    Playing Techniques & Performance Studies For Trumpet – Volume 1

    Volume 1

    Arturo Sandoval
    B-Flat Trumpet sheet music
    Publisher Hal Leonard Corporation
    Playing Techniques And Performance Studies For Trumpet, Vol. 2
    Playing Techniques And Performance Studies For Trumpet: Volume Three – Advanced Techniques And Concepts For Trumpet Mastery
    Again, thanks for any feedback that you can provide me with in regards to this request. I’m looking forward to playing this series with a braille music copy on my iOS device using BARD application.
    Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

    • Mary Dell Jenkins
      August 3, 2016 at 4:24 pm

      Thanks, Ms. Robles for your comments and suggestion. In the future, you can e-mail us directly at [email protected] We will check into adding “Playing Techniques and Performance Studies for the Trumpet” to the NLS music collection.

  8. William Morris
    March 8, 2017 at 10:24 pm

    I am trying to acquire a Braille copy of the Presbyterian Hymnal: Hymns, Psalms, and Spiritual Songs, published in 1990, for a new member in our congregation. Can you help me please?

  9. Michael Mbaonu Atasie
    May 4, 2017 at 11:47 am

    It makes great and close to my maker

  10. Enos
    June 7, 2017 at 12:58 am

    Greetings. I live in Costa Rica and we serve in an English spoken Baptist Church. A few years ago one of our members became completely blind but yet still faithful. Got married, established a family and serve in choir. Giving our Spanish native language, there are no English braille hymn books in our country (not one). I searched on the web and came up with this page. How can I get a donation or purchased one copy of the Baptist Hymnal for our sister. Please Help! Be blessed!

    • Katie Rodda
      June 15, 2017 at 4:27 pm

      Thank you for your comment Enos. When possible we provide information about outside resources that are available, but NLS does not sell materials. I will contact you through direct email with some other options. Thank you!

  11. Johanna Weisberg
    August 20, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    My husband needs the braille hymnals titled
    Glory to God: The Presbyterian Hymnal. Pls help us

    • Katie Rodda
      August 23, 2017 at 4:54 pm

      Hi Johanna,

      We do not have the exact title you’ve mentioned, but we do have the Presbyterian Hymnal published in 1990 in braille. Please email [email protected] if you are interested in receiving this material in braille!

  12. Ryan Kelly
    August 21, 2017 at 7:16 am

    Hello! My church uses the Trinity Hymnal, 1990 revised edition. I see you have a transcription of the Trinity, but not sure which edition.

    We have 2 blind members of our church. I would LOVE to be able to provide Braille versions for them. Would you please let me know how I can learn more? Thank you.

    • Katie Rodda
      August 23, 2017 at 4:52 pm

      Hi Ryan,

      We do have the 1990 revised edition in our collection available for loan. I will be sending you an email with some more information that you can pass on to your church members.


  13. Kay Chase
    September 1, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    The words for the Glory to God Presbyterian hymnal have been pposted as a book on BookShare.

    I chanced on this blog entry looking to see if the Celebration Hymnal had been brailled. I have talked to the publisher twice, but they told me they do not have a computer file copy of the words. That’s the problem.

  14. Johanna Weisberg
    June 24, 2018 at 12:18 pm

    My husband (who was born blind) and I are looking for Glory to God: The Presbyterian Hymnal for our church. Please help

    • Katie Rodda
      June 26, 2018 at 4:29 pm

      Hi Johanna,

      Thank you for your comment. The Music Section will be in touch with you soon via email about your request.

      Katie Rodda

  15. Mike Reith
    November 16, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    I’m trying to find out how to go about obtaining a Hymnal that was just published (Trinity Psalter Hymnal, 2018). Could you offer any advice? Thank you.

    • Katie Rodda
      November 21, 2018 at 11:33 am

      Hi Mike,

      The NLS Music Section has the 1990 version of the Trinity Psalter available in braille. Unfortunately we do not yet have the 2018 version in braille. If you are looking for a print copy instead of a braille one, please contact the publisher, Great Commission Publications: https://www.gcp.org/

  16. Angela Randall
    October 27, 2019 at 8:54 pm

    I would love the hymn book hyymns for worship and celebration to be on bard. There is no app either and I could use large print or braille

    • Katie Rodda
      October 28, 2019 at 10:05 am

      Hi Angela, NLS does not have a braille transcription of the “The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration,” and is unaware of its availability elsewhere. Please give the Music Section a call, 800-424-8567 ext. 2 or email us at [email protected] if you would like to discuss this matter further. Thank you!

  17. JZ
    October 28, 2019 at 10:08 pm

    For Angela Randall: The Open Library (Openlibrary.org) has a daisy file of the 1986 “The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration” on their site.

  18. Cindy Ingram
    December 3, 2019 at 10:58 pm

    How long can a braille or large print book be borrowed for?

    • Katie Rodda
      December 5, 2019 at 10:04 am

      Dear Cindy,

      Our materials can be loaned out for 3 months, with an option to renew for another 3 months. Please email us at [email protected] or call at 1-800-424-8567 ext. 2 if you have any further questions, or would like to order materials.

      Katie Rodda

  19. Jonathan Vogler
    February 28, 2020 at 8:03 am

    Looking for the four volume Lutheran Hymnal in braille. Any ideas where to find a copy?

  20. Robert House III
    November 15, 2020 at 3:39 pm

    I am wondering if I can get a braille hymnal for my friend thanks

  21. Anne Clark
    July 13, 2021 at 12:20 pm

    I am trying to find The Lutheran Hymnal in Braille for a new church member. Do you have a way I can obtain one for her, or direct her caregiver where and how to get one?

    Thank you!

    • Katie Rodda
      July 22, 2021 at 2:02 pm

      Dear Anne,

      Thank you for your comment. We will be emailing you with more information about obtaining braille hymnals.

      Katie Rodda, NLS Music Section

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