Sunday, January 22, 2023

499. Proper 29 (Series C)

Egads, what a milestone! This is not only the final installment of my exhausting three-year-lectionary hymn project, but also (counting "Hymn 0" as this blog numbers them) my 500th original hymn. The lessons for this Sunday (Nov. 20-26) are Malachi 3:13-18, Colossians 1:13-20 and Luke 23:27-43. The tune is LAMMAS by Arthur H. Brown (1889), which LHy and ELHy employ for a perversely tedious, 10-stanza version of "Draw nigh and take the body of the Lord" (which, I think, goes down much easier in five four-line stanzas, thanks). However, with a briefer hymn in view, I thought it might make a nice period at the end of this sequence of hymns.

Jesus, alas! What evil days are nigh!
Such was the green wood; how much more the dry!

When You were seen, men spurned You to Your face;
Piercing the hand that holds the door of grace.

Still more they kick as mule against the goad,
Breaking Your yoke, they slip Your doctrine's load.

Topple the mountains; let the oceans churn;
Darken the skies, that men may fear and turn.

Come, while yet faith endures upon the earth;
Come! All creation cries in throes of birth.

Your kingdom come, if be Your will, O Christ,
That we may swiftly enter Paradise!

NOTE: There is still much work to be done on the book-in-progress, Bountiful Hymns, whose bounty will mostly pertain to this series of liturgical hymns. I have a Scripture index in progress, keyed to all three books of my original hymns; I have at least one more hymn in mind to add to the current collection; and of course, some proofing and publishing work to do. And I already have another project or two waiting in the wings. But neither of them is as intensive as this has been; and boy, do I look forward to going back to reading books and doing other normal "me-time" things!

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