Thursday, October 29, 2009

Blest Be the Father of Our Lord

This Sunday, All Saints' Day, our first grandchild is being baptized at St. John-Amelith!  (She will be wearing the baptismal gown first made for my brother, which I wore when I was baptized in 1955, which all our children have worn for their baptisms, which my cousins and nieces and nephew have worn, and which now will be worn by our little Alina...the twelfth child to be baptized in this christening gown.)  This hymn text is written for this happy occasion to the glory of God at Alina's baptism into Christ Jesus.  I chose the wonderful tune KIRKWOOD by Joseph Herl.

1.  Blest be the Father of our Lord
     For His intended mercy toward
     Our lost and fallen race:
     In Christ, before the world began,
     He chose us in a wondrous plan
     Of His most glorious grace!

2.  Now at this font by faith we see
     Time intersect eternity,
     As here God's will is shown:
     One born without His saving Name
     He comes to cleanse; He comes to claim,
     Adopting as His own.

3.  We bring, dear Lord, our infant small;
     She shares the sin of Adam's Fall,
     A stranger to Your love.
     Come with Your life, invigorate;
     Her second birth initiate--
     An heir of bliss above.

4.  O Christ, by You our child is prized,
     Our little one by You baptized,
     Redeemed and reconciled;
     A spotless robe You freely give:
     Your precious blood that she might live
     Forever as Your child.

5.  Let us no little ones despise;
     In heav'n their angels fix their eyes
     Upon the Father's face.
     Good Shepherd, guard and keep we pray
     This lamb, that she might never stray
     From Your rich fold of grace.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

O God the Father, Your True Being

This text is my English translation of the baptism text written in 1941 by Jochen Klepper, "Gott Vater, du hast deinen Namen" :

Gott Vater, du hast deinen Namen                O God the Father, Your true being
in deinem lieben Sohn verklaert                    You have in Your dear Son declared;
und us, so-oft wir zu dir kamen,                   We come, with eyes of faith here seeing
die Vatergnade neu gewaehrt.                     Your tender favor newly shared.

So rufe dieses Kind mit Namen,                    You give Your Spirit in this water;
das nun nach deinem Sohne heisst.               Your Word invites in Jesus' name:
Wir glauben, du Dreiein'ger!  Amen!            "Beloved son, beloved daughter,
Zum Wasser gabst du Wort und Geist            You may as heir My heaven claim!"

Erhalte uns bei deinem Namen!                     In Your strong Name, Lord, keep us growing
Dein Sohn hat es fur uns erfleht.                    In all Your Son for us has prayed;
Geist, Wort und Wasser mach zum Samen      Come, make this bath the seed bestowing
der Frucht des Heils, die nie vergeht!            Salvation's fruit that will not fade.