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That ye should earnestly contend for127127ἐπαγωνίζεσθαι: “be very anxious for it:” “feel for it as for a friend in jeopardy.” the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. St. Jude 3.

Seest thou, how tearful and alone,

And drooping like a wounded dove,

The Cross in sight, but Jesus gone,

The widow’d Church is fain to rove?

Who is at hand that loves the Lord?128128Then saith He to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her into his own home. St. John xix. 27.

Make haste, and take her home, and bring

Thine household choir, in true accord

Their soothing hymns for her to sing.

Soft on her fluttering heart shall breathe

The fragrance of that genial isle,

There she may weave her funeral wreath,

And to her own sad music smile.

The Spirit of the dying Son

Is there, and fills the holy place

With records sweet of duties done,

Of pardon’d foes, and cherish’d grace.

And as of old by two and two129129St. Mark vi. 7; St. Luke x. 1.

His herald saints the Saviour sent

To soften hearts like morning dew,

Where he to shine in mercy meant;

So evermore He deems His name

Best honour’d and his way prepar’d,

When watching by his altar-flame

He sees His servants duly pair’d.

He loves when age and youth are met,

Fervent old age and youth serene,

Their high and low in concord set

For sacred song, Joy’s golden mean.

He loves when some clear soaring mind

Is drawn by mutual piety

To simple souls and unrefin’d,

Who in life’s shadiest covert lie.

Or if perchance a sadden’d heart

That once was gay and felt the spring,

Cons slowly o’er its alter’d part,

In sorrow and remorse to sing,

Thy gracious care will send that way

Some spirit full of glee, yet taught

To bear the sight of dull decay,

And nurse it with all-pitying thought;

Cheerful as soaring lark, and mild

As evening blackbird’s dull-toned lay,

When the relenting sun has smil’d

Bright through a whole December day.

These are the tones to brace and cheer

The lonely watcher of the fold,

When nights are dark, and foeman near,

When visions fade and hearts grow cold.

How timely then a comrade’s song

Comes floating on the mountain air,

And bids thee yet be bold and strong —

Fancy may die, but Faith is there.

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