There was a surprising amount of Chinese writing in 19th century Australia. Ranging from posters and placards announcing community activities, temple, store names and advertising, and of course letters to and from family. Non-Chinese also used written Chinese to communicate with Chinese Australians including governments and perhaps most consistently and earliest Christian groups.
Bibles translated into the language of the converted or those targeted for conversion where common. By the end of the 19th century however a significant number of Chinese Australian’s were not only Christian but had their own Ministers able to converse with their congregations in the appropriate language or dialect. Most prominent among these was the Rev Young Wai who also translated and helped publish this collection of hymns for the use of Chinese Christians.