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Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday: My Song is Love Unknown

My song is love unknown,
My Savior’s love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I, that for my sake
My Lord should take, frail flesh and die?

He came from His blest throne
Salvation to bestow;
But men made strange, and none
The longed for Christ would know:
But O! my Friend, my Friend indeed,
Who at my need His life did spend.

Sometimes they strew His way,
And His sweet praises sing;
Resounding all the day
Hosannas to their King:
Then “Crucify!” is all their breath,
And for His death they thirst and cry.

Why, what hath my Lord done?
What makes this rage and spite?
He made the lame to run,
He gave the blind their sight,
Sweet injuries! Yet they at these
Themselves displease, and ’gainst Him rise.

They rise and needs will have
My dear Lord made away;
A murderer they saved,
The Prince of life they slay,
Yet cheerful He to suffering goes,
That He His foes from thence might free.

In life, no house, no home
My Lord on earth might have;
In death no friendly tomb
But what a stranger gave.
What may I say? Heav’n was His home;
But mine the tomb wherein He lay.

Here might I stay and sing,
No story so divine;
Never was love, dear King!
Never was grief like Thine.
This is my Friend, in Whose sweet praise
I all my days could gladly spend.


  1. Blessed Good Friday to you all. How are you today? We'll continue to walk The Way together.

  2. Good morning, RevGals!

    I am tired but happy with the "Blessed Supper" we did last night with the youth. For our congregation to even be in a room, eating and talking, is huge, so I'm holding on to that.

    So happy to have this community to walk with right now. Thank you all.

  3. One of my favorite hymns...I love to have the congregation sing this in the Maundy Thursday service while we are stripping the altar. It's not an easy piece to sing if one is unfamiliar with it, but the tune and the words are so powerful.

    Following a move to a new state, I continue to spend this Holy Week unpacking and organizing my house, in preparation to begin my new call a week from Monday. It's a tiring job, physically, and I ache all over. But it is also a joyful job.

    And, I continue to hold in prayer all of you who are leading worship, preparing and preaching sermons/meditations, those who are suffering or struggling, those who are caring for the suffering...well, all of us.

  4. We don't have a service today, having walked through the Passion text to the end last night. But because I want to be in church, I'm taking my daughter to the Episcopal Cathedral at noon. I haven't been to an Episcopal service since a friend's ordination in 2002 or so. Hope I'll do everything from the right position! Mostly hope I'm going with the right attitude, which is to accompany Jesus all along the way.

  5. I'll be spending the morning with my son before his father picks him up. Fondue for lunch. Repairing the garden the marauding skunk invaded. This time of year is tough. This year more so. I will re-read the piece I did on Mary at the foot of the cross.

  6. We had a good footwashing last night, a nice blend of parishioners (mostly seniors) and my boss's "students" -- she's also university chaplain...I preached; fortunately or unfortunately had not seen our Alaskan friend's FB post before I did so! And then we washed feet, agreeing in advance that "she" would get down and wash, "I" would stay standing and pour (and scoot to and fro with fresh water etc.) so that worked well (pausing to admire each other's pedicures!!!)
    Today, devotions at 11 and I will take children out midway for Way of the Cross type activities.
    Major concert tonight -- small local auditioned choir and the Passion According to St. John...a clergy favourite, every year, whatever the choir chooses to perform.
    Breathe, everybody, we're on the downhill pull now!

  7. I am very sad: my 13 year old cat died in the night. She was old and it was probably time. But I am broken up. It fits with today.

    Taking two dogs to vet, then Good Friday Service & Stations of the Cross @ noon.

  8. Mary Beth, I am so sorry! Hugs to you.
    On my free day (no service here), I am pondering the women at the cross.

  9. Mary Beth, I am so sorry about your kitty. A very sad loss for you, I know.

    Off to my own Presby church in a few minutes (walking in 45 degree rain; can you believe it, with such a late Easter?) then to the Carmelites this afternoon (a ride.) The third week of no driving - getting quite tiresome.

  10. Oh Mary Beth, so sorry for your loss. It's been a rampant week here. Six hour RT on Wednesday for Renewal of Vows with my clergy folk on Wednesday. Last night I had the MT service, washed the feet of my folks for the last time. After stripping the altar went hiome to do more stripping of the personality from my house as instructed by realtor. Moving day is June 1. I am wholly in transition, an anxious and unsettled place, but God, as alwys is good and grace abounds. I have Easter service, another "last" thing and am prepared to be joyful and sad. Prayers to all.

  11. MaryBeth, how sad about your cat :-( Knowing that it was time doesn't lessen the pain of losing a beloved feline friend.

  12. A blessed Good Friday to everyone! This is my first time posting here, and I am glad to be part of this group! I had a good turn-out last night for Holy Communion, tenebrae, and stations of the cross. I still have to write an Easter sermon, which may be difficult since my husband has the day off and doesn't quite get the "don't-interrupt-me-I'm-on-a-roll" mode that I get in. Praying for all of us as we minister this Holy weekend!

  13. Welcome, Sharon, from another Sharon! Good to have you here. I don't have anyone to interrupt me in my sermon writing so I have to invent my own distractions, which is so easy for me to do!

    Mary Beth, so sorry about your cat. I have a cat that just turned 14 so I have some idea about how attached you could be to her.

    I finished my homily for tonight right before noon. Now I am one Easter sermon away from being totally done. Well, that and finding some butterfly stickers (or something) as a treat for the children's sermon.

  14. Hello everyone! I'm so sorry to hear about your cat Mary Beth. Sigh.

    Things are moving right along here at Chez Semfem:
    --Easter prizes for service project are packed up and ready to go
    --Alb is washed and hanging up to dry in preparation for Sunday
    --Readings are all assigned for tonight's service, which I am NOT in charge of, hooray
    --Something in the Crock Pot bubbling along for a late dinner
    --Shut-in visits are either done or scheduled for tomorrow
    --Theoretically I should be writing my Easter morning sermon now. Hmm. I knew something was missing...

  15. MaryBeth, I am so sorry! What a sad thing. Had she been sick, or did she just not wake up? One of my friends recently had her dog die during the night without any indication that the dog was ill (just old). Her grief was compounded by the shock and suddenness of it. Whatever the circumstances, I am so very sorry.

    Home from our midday community Good Friday services. Have a few hours before I have to be back at church for our Tenebrae service. I'm starting to panic a bit about all the cooking and baking I have to do for Easter. My MIL lives in town now, and she has a friend visiting to help her out for a couple of weeks following knee replacements surgery. With our family of 4, plus our stepson who is currently staying with us, plus the two of them, I will have 7 for Easter lunch, including one vegan and two picky kids. Oy!!

  16. So sorry about your cat, MB. :-( Blessed Good Friday to all. I'm missing having to do anything. Will be attending a community service later today, but seems odd to have no role in it.

  17. odd half day off here - have Good Friday service tonight to show up at but only as a presence - last sermon of the week tomorrow night - not written yet but in my head.

    Terri & RDK - blessings on your transitions


  18. As usual, even though I've had a block of time available, my focus is too much on Good Friday to even think about an Easter sermon. Guess I'll be writing tomorrow, after all.

  19. Blogger doesn't want to cooperate with me today. Hopefully this time will work.

    I just got home from meeting with the funeral family.

    Tonight is ready to go.

    I still need to write 2 for Sunday and the funeral one for Monday.

    But first a nap.

  20. Vicar, I like the way your mind works.

  21. Songbird's situation is similar to mine. Nothing written yet for Easter morning sermon. At least there was reading and pondering and a little nap in there.

    Now to eat some dinner and get ready for tonight's service. Back later.

  22. Mary Beth I'm so sorry for your loss.

    Our Maundy Thursday supper and communion service ended as Jesus was taken from the garden. Today we hold a prayer vigil. I took the first hour and found myself at the foot of the cross with the other women. I posted about it here:

    This year for the first time since I came here I don't have to preach - our choir is bringing the Easter message. I feel a bit strange about that, but at least I get to sing in the choir.

    May we all experience the joy of the resurrection at the end of our walk together this week.

  23. I have managed to finalize the service for tonight, with just over 2 hours to spare! Now to fill the Easter Alleluia box with the stuff that needs to be in there (except the banner, which will go in Sunday morning so it doesn't get too wrinkly!), check whether the heat is on anywhere in this building (I'm freezing, so going with NO), and maybe even grab some dinner before worship. wouldn't that be awesome?

    Tomorrow I have stay in my pajamas, clean up my house, and pack for vacation. Please, God, please let me stay in my pajamas....

  24. Hmpf. I'm not usually much of a Good Friday person, but I now think I like my Good Friday sermon more than my Easter sermon. Finishing up for worship in 2 hours. Threw the older kids in the basement with a movie and the baby is taking a real late nap. Just about done.

  25. Just back from a massive shopping trip to Target, Whole Foods, and the grocery store. And of course as soon as I unpacked the groceries I discovered one item I failed to get. Argh! So that's an errand tomorrow on top of baking/cooking/worship prep.

    We'll be leaving for our Tenebrae service in a bit. I really hate how my Good Friday gets chopped up because of our participation in a midday service with other downtown churches. I mean, philosophically I like the idea of worshipping with other churches, but practically speaking, it really messes up my energy for the day.

    All right, dinner for the kiddos, then back into my dress clothes, and off again. Hope all of you have a holy evening!

  26. At least I made edits on my Easter Sunrise reflection. But that's all I've got. I can't get my head around Matthew today.

  27. Hello, friends. Mary Beth, I am so sorry to hear of your loss.
    I had to work all day, but it was a fairly quiet day and, having arrived at 7:00, I was able to leave at 4:00. Now I am about to feed the dogs and then will head to church to sing in Schutz' "Seven Words". A blessed Good Friday to all.

  28. Zorra, I misread your post as "now I will head to church to feed the dogs and sing..." I'll admit, some days that's about what it feels like!

    Teri, can you say more about your Alleluia box? That sounds like it has school chapel potential to me, and I need something catchy for Tuesday morning.

    I'm done with Good Friday, two services; there's another tonight but I won't be attending. I have not been able to embrace GF at all this year; I'm in the midst of some difficult times in my life, and I think I just can't bear to draw near to any more pain. I don't know if Easter will be any better, worse, or different than usual; I am simply trying to be gentle with myself in allowing all of it to be whatever it is.

    Prayers for all of us, as we continue to meet our crucified and risen Lord however we most need him.

  29. Mary Beth, I am so sorry to hear about your cat, and this sad loss of companionship.

  30. Thinking of you, dear PG, and your sweet boy. And I sat in the very nice community Good Friday service (feeling odd, as I said) I was praying for all of you who were presiding or taking part, and have Easter Sunday sermons to write. Love and prayers to the Rev Gals and Pals.

  31. FInished with three services today; still have to write the sermon for the vigil tomorrow night and the one for I know what i'll be doing tomorrow! One is started; I'm doing Matthew at both which is a particular challenge to write two sermons on the same text--and it really does need to be two different sermons.

    Attendance at MT and GF was down from last year...I don't know how low to go before I pull the plug on something. I love the Holy Week services and would really miss them, each powerful in its own way.

    MB, sorry about your kitty!

  32. GF done - the first Episcopal church i've served that did communion from reserve on GF. I like the no communion better i think - makes the point better imho.
    i think i'll get up early to write on the EV sermon - oh yeah and singing the exultet


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