Sunday, May 9, 2010

Earth Feels the Season's Joyance

As discussed last year, the last Sunday in Eastertide, the Sunday before Ascension, is also celebrated as Rogation Sunday in some churches. This dates from an earlier time and an agrarian society that no longer exists in most places, but anecdotal evidence suggests that interest in observing the occasion again is increasing. I found several more links this year than last, including these about Rogation-related customs such as "beating the bounds" and "rammelation biscuits."

This hymn combines the Easter theme with thanks for the arrival of spring, as we've discussed before, which makes it especially suitable for the Rogation observance (though, admittedly, many churches have given up on Easter hymns by this point in the season). The text and tune are by two of my favorites, Frederick Lucian Hosmer and Henry Smart.

O day of light and gladness,
Of prophecy and song,
What thoughts within us waken,
What hallowed memories throng!
The soul’s horizon widens,
Past, present, future blend;
And rises on our vision
The life that hath no end.

Earth feels the season’s joyance,
From mountain range to sea
The tides of life are flowing
Fresh, manifold and free.
In valley and on upland,
By forest pathways dim,
All nature lifts in chorus
The resurrection hymn.

O Source of life eternal,
To thee our hearts upraise
The Easter song of gladness,
The Passover of praise.
Thine are the many mansions,
The dead die not to thee,
Who fillest from thy fullness
Time and eternity.

Frederick L. Hosmer, 1903; alt.
Henry T. Smart, 1836

Last Sunday in Eastertide: Prophets, Psalmists, Seers and Sages


Dorothy said...

"Joyance!" That's a new word for me and I love it! Its so expressive.

We've sung "Crown Him with Many Crowns" every Sunday since Resurrection Sunday at my church. Its been a glorious Eastertide!

AuntE said...

There are some years when I have been more diligent about continuing the celebration of Easter through the season. This year, however, we've had a different supply minister almost every week beginning Palm Sun. I find it a little more difficult to keep the focus on Easter when that happens.

As for rogation - can't say I haven't thought about my garden, but with overnight frost recently, it's too early for much planting outside yet.