“And Dyes the Green of Weeping Earth”: Georg Fabricius, Hymns 1.5

We come to the fifth poem in Georg Fabricius’s hymn cycle (1, 2, 3, 4). The meter and rhyme-scheme is the same as in the others.

Also as in the others, we find Fabricius giving a brief narrative from the account of Christ’s Passion in the Gospels followed by a prayer that applies that narrative to the reader.

The Latin text:

CHRISTUS ORANS et sudans.

Psal. XXXVIII. Domine ante te omne desiderium meum, et gemitus meus a te non est absconditus.

HORA DECIMA.

Angore turbatus necis
    Patrem rogat suspiriis,
    Opemque caelo, crimine
    Nostro gravatus, flagitat.
Cui mortis in certamine
    Cruor fluebat corpore,
    Tellus madet sui gemens
    Heu conditoris sanguine
A patre perfert, angeli
    Vox latea, spem solatii.
    Audit parentis subditus
    Mandata sancti filius.
Repelle non placabilis
    O Christe terrores necis,
    Mentes pavescant horrida
    Nec inferorum nomina.
Sancto tuo nos angelo
    Solare, confirma, iuva:
    Mordet severa sauciae
    Cum culpa conscientiae.
Ne murmuremus, cum malis
    Vexamur, aut periculis:
    Sed sit voluntatem sequi
    Tuam voluptas pectori.

In English:

Christ Praying and Sweating

Psalm 38: “Lord, my desire is before You, and my groaning is not hidden from You.”

At the tenth hour.

Distressed by suffocating fear

     Of death, the Son with choking cries

     Entreats the Father for His help

     From heaven, burdened by our crimes.

His sweat comes pouring out like blood,

     The presage of His mortal strife,

     And dyes the green of weeping earth

     With her Creator’s crimson life.

An angel from the Father brings

     A cheering word of confidence;

     The subject Son does not refuse

     The purpose for which He was sent.

Defend us, Christ, and drive away

     The terrors of unyielding death,

     Nor let our minds shudder and dread

     Hell’s horrors in our final breath.

And let Your holy angel be

     Our solace, comforter, and aid,

     When wounded conscience gnaws at us

     For sins whose debt You, Savior, paid.

Let us not grumble, when by ills

     Or perils we are vexed and tried,

     But let Your holy will be done,

     And “Amen” be our heart’s reply.

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