Good Friday: “O Sacred Head, Now Wounded”

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 Savior!
‘Tis I deserve Thy place;
look on me with Thy favor,
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 for Thee.

Be near when I am dying,
O show Thy cross to me!
And, for my succor flying,
come, Lord, to set me free.
These eyes, new faith receiving,
from Thee shall never move;
for he who dies believing
dies safely in Thy love.

–Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)

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