Archive for the ‘Holy Saturday’ Tag

Darkly Frowns the Ev’ning Sky   2 comments

Harrowing of Hades

Above:  The Harrowing of Hades

Image in the Public Domain

Text by Greville Phillimore (1821-1884)

Hymn Source = Sursum Corda:  A Book of Praise (1898), Baptist General Convention for Foreign Missions

William Jensen Reynolds writes from a Southern Baptist perspective:

The three most significant hymnals published for Baptists in the North during the last half of the nineteenth century were The Baptist Hymn and Tune Book (1871), The Baptist Hymnal (1883), and Sursum Corda (1898).  All of these were the work of the American Baptist Publishing Society in Philadelphia.  The first, a large collection of 980 hymns, failed to meet with general acceptance, largely because of the inferior quality of the tunes.  The second collection is of better quality, and while it gives evidence of the rapidly emerging gospel song, it also reveals the initial influence among Baptists of Hymns Ancient and Modern, the most influential English hymnal of the nineteenth century.  Sursum Corda, compiled by E. H. Johnson, went further in this direction.  The compiler’s disregard for the emerging gospel song and his excessive borrowing of Anglican hymns and tunes resulted in a hymnal of the highest quality, but one unacceptable to the majority of Baptist congregations.  All of this plus the Latin title was too much for too many Baptists even in the North.

Companion to Baptist Hymnal (Nashville, TN:  Broadman Press, 1976), page 18

I wondered why an Anglican hymn based on the Harrowing of Hell was in a Baptist hymnal.  Now I know.  I also approve of borrowing Anglican hymns, especially from Hymns Ancient and Modern.  And the Latin title is a nice touch.  The fact of my Episcopal affiliation is showing, is it not?

Sursum Corda is Latin for “Lift up your hearts,” as in that which precedes “We lift them up to the Lord.”

The Baptist General Convention for Foreign Missions helped to form the Northern Baptist Convention in 1907.


Darkly frowns the ev’ning sky;

Falls for woe the mourner’s eye:

Silent is the rocky tomb

Where as yet no dead have come,

Armed soldiers by the side,

They have left the Crucified.


God! my God! and dost thou show

Wonders midst the dead below?

They who slumber ‘neath the earth,

Shall they wake to second birth?

Who shall these dread gates unfold,

Barred through all the days of old?


Lo! the doors are opening,

And the dead behold their King:

See! the awful fathers know

Him, who lays death’s terrors low:

Hark! he bids the ancients rise

Ransomed by his sacrifice.


When we sink into the dust,

May we fix on thee our trust!

Saviour of the sons of men,

May we die to live again!

Dying, may our faith recall

Thy dear death and burial.


Thine Agony, O Lord, is O’er   4 comments


Above:  The Edicule, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem, Palestine, Between 1898 and 1946

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-matpc-05381

Original Words by Archbishop Johann Olaf Wallin (1779-1839)

English Translation by Ernst W. Olson (1870-1958)

Hymn Source = The Hymnal and Order of Service (1925), The Evangelical Lutheran Augustana Synod


1. Thine agony, O Lord, is o’er,

And victory for evermore

Is ours through Thy great passion.

Earth had for Thee no peace in store

Till peace was our possession.

2. Now rest Thee, gentle Shepherd blest,

Who ‘mid this throng has found no rest,

Nor in a home abided.

The shelter life from Thee withheld

The grave alone provided.

3. O silent grave! O blest retreat,

A refuge for my Saviour meet,

No longer dark and narrow!

Like Him, I enter thee content,

Released from toil and sorrow.

4. O sleep of death, O night profound,

My Lord hath set for thee a bound:

His promise I remember.

Like Him, triumphant I shall come

From out that peaceful chamber.

Holy Week: Holy Saturday   1 comment

Above:  St. Martin in the Fields Episcopal Church, Atlanta, Georgia, April 23, 2011

Image Source = Bill Monk, Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta



O Christ, Who Called the Twelve:

O Thou, Who Through This Holy Week:

Thou Art the Way:

Prayer for Holy Saturday:

Hymn of Promise:

O Jesus, Youth of Nazareth:

Thine Agony, O Lord, is O’er:

Darkly Frowns the Ev’ning Sky:


Posted January 30, 2012 by neatnik2009 in Lent/Confession of Sin 2000s

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Prayer for Holy Saturday   6 comments

The Harrowing of Hades, Istanbul, Turkey

Image Source = Wikipedia

Prayer Source = Jonathan Montaldo, compiler, Lent and Easter Wisdom from Thomas Merton:  Daily Scripture and Prayers Together with Thomas Merton’s Own Words (Liguori, MO:  Liguori, 2007), page 97

Prayer by Jonathan Montaldo


My heart is restless.

There is much about my life I do not understand.

I do not know myself.

I sense that if I knew myself truly, I would know you.

Give me the grace to rise out of my ignorance and

move through all my unknowing toward you, Jesus,

calling me out of the darkness and death to life.

Lead me to the paradise of your mercy.

Posted February 24, 2011 by neatnik2009 in Lent/Confession of Sin 2000s

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