Here's an appropriate hymn for Good Friday: O Sacred Head Now Wounded, arranged by Sally Atari

Apr 13, 2017, 04:18 PM

The original Latin text of this medieval hymn was originally attributed to the French mystic Bernard of Clairveaux, but further research has indicated that it was actually written by the Cistersian abbot Arnulf of Leuen. It was translated into German by the renowned Lutheran hymnist Paul Gerhardt, and thence into English by an Anglican vicar of Oxfordshire named John Gambold. He called it O Head So Full of Bruises, which just doesn't quite have the right ring to it. :-) The well-loved text which is so often sung today was later translated by James Waddel Alexander, who was an American Presbyterian minister. yay for Presbyterians! :-P Here is the text:

O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down, Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown; O sacred Head, what glory, what bliss till now was Thine! Yet, though despised and gory, I joy to call Thee mine.

What Thou my Lord hast suffered was all for sinners' gain. Mine, mine was the transgression, but thine the deadly pain. Lo here I fall, my Saviour: 'Tis I deserve Thy place. Look on me with Thy favour, vouchsafe to me Thy grace.

What language shall I borrow to thank Thee, dearest friend for this, thy dying sorrow: thy pity without end? O make me thine forever; and should I fainting be, Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to Thee.

The music is by Hans Leo Hassler, who originally intended it for a secular lovesong, but it was appropriated by Gerhardt after he translated the hymn from the original Latin. It's too bad Sally Atari only had a keyboard at her disposal when she recorded this hymn. Proper baroque instruments would have been great. :-) The keyboard makes this sound a bit cheesy, but it's still a really nice arrangement, and I totally give her credit for making good use of what she had. I'm sure there are lovely arrangements of this out there with full orchestra, but I'm sharing this one because I have so much respect for this artist. #Christian #Easter #hymns #music #religious #SallyAtari