O what terror in thy forethought

Representative Text

1 O what terror in thy forethought,
Ending scene of mortal life!
Heart is sickened, reins are loosened,
Thrills each nerve, with terror rife,
When the anxious heart depicteth
All the anguish of the strife!

2 Christ, unconquered King of glory!
Thou my wretched soul relieve
In that last extremest terror
When the body she must leave:
Let the Accuser of the brethren
O'er me then no power receive!

3 Let the Prince of darkness vanish,
And Gehenna's legions fly!
Shepherd, Thou Thy sheep, thus ransomed,
To Thy country lead on high,
Where for ever in fruition
I may see Thee eye to eye!

Source: Church Book: for the use of Evangelical Lutheran congregations #543

Author: St. Peter Damian

Damiani, or Damian, Peter, Saint, Cardinal, Bishop, and Doctor of the Church, whom Dom Gueranger calls "The austere reformer of the 11th century," was born at Ravenna, about 988. He was the youngest of many children. His mother abandoned him as a babe, and his life was only saved by his being discovered by a faithful female servant, who took care of him until such time as his mother relented and received him back again. Both his parents dying while he was very young, he fell into the hands of a married brother, who, treating him with great harshness and regarding him rather as a slave than a near relation, sent him,”when he was grown up, into the fields to feed swine.” In spite of this treatment, he early developed a virtuous and pious… Go to person page >

Translator: J. M. Neale

John M. Neale's life is a study in contrasts: born into an evangelical home, he had sympathies toward Rome; in perpetual ill health, he was incredibly productive; of scholarly tem­perament, he devoted much time to improving social conditions in his area; often ignored or despised by his contemporaries, he is lauded today for his contributions to the church and hymnody. Neale's gifts came to expression early–he won the Seatonian prize for religious poetry eleven times while a student at Trinity College, Cambridge, England. He was ordained in the Church of England in 1842, but ill health and his strong support of the Oxford Movement kept him from ordinary parish ministry. So Neale spent the years between 1846 and 1866 as a warden of Sackvi… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: O what terror in thy forethought
Latin Title: Gravi me terrore pulsas
Translator: J. M. Neale (1851)
Author: St. Peter Damian
Meter: 8.7.8.7.8.7
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain

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Church Book #543

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Church Book #543

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Hymns for the use of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, by the Authority of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania #578

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