A Prayer for Grace

Original Text: 
Marie Joussaye, Selections from Anglo Saxon Songs ([Dawson, Yukon]: Dawson News Publishing Co., [?1920?]: 18-19. National Library of Canada
1    God grant me grace,
2Whenever I attempt a kindly deed,
3To help another in the hour of need;
4    To do it cheerfully with smiling face
5And willing hands, nor ever stop to heed
6The sneers of those whose narrow souls and creed
7    For Christ's broad charity can find no place.
8    God, make me strong,
9If when I see my brother's honored name
10Tarnished and marred by undeserved shame,
11    To step from out the sneering, worldy throng
12And tho' he has no friend in all the land,
13To take him bravely, boldly by the hand
14    And tell the carping critics they are wrong.
15    God, make me dumb,
16If, when I give a pittance from my share
17To ease the burdens that my comrades bear,
18    I tell abroad the substance and the sum
19Of what I gave and vaunt my charity,
20And whine of man's ingratitude to me;
21    If I should boast like this, God make me dumb.
22    God, grant me speech,
23When words are needed to defend the weak,
24God give me strength if ever, then to speak;
25    And wing my words with truth that they may reach
26The hearts of men and cause them to unite
27In bonds of sympathy for truth and right,
28    And teach me, Lord, to practice what I preach.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
2011
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