The Mystery of Lent
"And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterwards He was hungry."--Matt. iv. 2
Now with the slow revolving year,
Again the fast we greet,
Which in mystic circle moves
Of forty days complete.
"Much have we sinned, O Lord! and still
We sin each day we live;
Yet pour Thy pity from on high,
And of Thy grace forgive.
That fast by law and prophets taught,
By Jesus Christ restored;
Jesus, of seasons and of times
The Maker and the Lord.
Remember that we still are Thine,
Though of a fallen frame;
And take not from us in Thy wrath
The glory of Thy name.
Henceforth more sparing let us be
Of food, of words, of sleep;
Henceforth beneath a stricter guard
The roving senses keep.
Undo past evil; grant us, Lord,
More grace to do aright;
So may we now and ever find
Acceptance in Thy sight."
And let us shun whatever things
Distract the careless heart;
And let us shut the soul against
The tyrant tempter's art;
Blessed Trinity in Unity!
Vouchsafe us, in Thy love,
To gather from these fasts below
Immortal fruit above. Amen
And weep before the Judge, and strive,
His vengeance to appease;
Saying to Him with contrite voice,
Upon our bended knees: