Elizabeth Prentiss (1818 - 1881)
Elizabeth Payson Prentiss (Portland, Maine, 26 October 1818 – 13 August 1878) was an American author, well known for her hymn "More Love to Thee, O Christ" and the religious novel Stepping Heavenward (1869). Her writings enjoyed renewed popularity in the late 20th century. Elizabeth Payson was born in Portland, Maine, United States, the fifth of eight children (only six survived infancy) of the eminent Congregationalist pastor Edward Payson. The influences of New England Christianity, consisting of the inherited Puritan foundation with added evangelistic, missional, and philanthropic elements, were evident in the Payson family. The family gathered for prayer three times a day. Elizabeth was deeply impacted by the death of her father, who had suffered from tuberculosis for over a year, on October 22, 1827. The family moved to New York City in 1831, and in May of that year, Elizabeth made a public profession of faith in Jesus Christ and joined the Bleecker Street Presbyterian Church.
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