Thursday, August 6, 2015

127. Gaudete Hymn

Gaudete is the mass for the third Sunday in Advent, famously one of the two Sundays of the church year when the liturgical color is "rose," which is to say, let's face it, pink. It takes its Latin name from the beginning of the Introit, "Rejoice in the Lord always..." The historic texts for the day are the Introit from Philippians 4:4-6 and Psalm 85:1, the Epistle from 1 Corinthians 4:1-5 and the Gospel from Matthew 11:2-10. My working tune for this hymn is ES JAMMRE by Jakob Hintze, 1679, taken from a Hirschberg (Silesian) hymnal of 1747 where it was set to the text "Es jammre, wer nicht glaubt, ich will mich stillen."
Lord, we rejoice and sing with jubilation,
For You showed favor to Your captive nation,
Sending the Baptist as herald appointed,
Readying men to receive Your Anointed.

Not in soft words, even less kingly raiment,
John preached repentance and noted the payment
God's Lamb would give, us from sin to deliver,
Pouring forth pardon from out Jordan's river.

Christ is our Passover, John was proclaiming,
In his "Behold the Lamb" our ransom naming.
In John's hard penance and discipline taxing
Waned the old leaven as new bread was waxing.

May we so honor both John and our Savior
That we repent of our sinful behavior,
Finding in Christ all forgiveness and healing
Till He returns, every secret revealing.

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