The Story Of The Jamaica’s National Song For Schools

I pledge my heart forever
To serve with humble pride
This shining homeland, ever
So long as earth abide.

I pledge my heart, this island
As God and faith shall live
My work, my strength, my love and
My loyalty to give.

O green isle of the Indies,
Jamaica, strong and free,
Our vows and loyal promises
O heartland, ’tis to Thee.

CaptureThese are the words to the National Song, I Pledge My Heart, which was written by acclaimed novelist Victor Stafford Reid. It was inspired by the British song I Vow to Thee My Country, and was composed to be sung at schools and at civic occasions. In fact, it was initially called Vow Now, My Heart and those lyrics were later replaced with ‘I pledge my heart.’

The National Song for schools was composed with the aim of preparing the youth for nationhood after independence, which was gained in 1962. Together with the National Anthem and National Pledge, the National Song is sung during the flag raising ceremony at schools and other civic events. Click on the image below for a closer look at the January 28, 1962 issue of The Gleaner highlighting the song.

Click here to find Ministry Paper No. 40, dated May 30, 1962, giving more details about the National Song, Prayer and Pledge.