Scripture Verse

The Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. 2 Corinthians 1:3


Words: Ol­iv­er Wen­dell Holmes, Sr., Songs in Ma­ny Keys 1861. Holmes wrote these words dur­ing the Am­er­i­can ci­vil war, but the themes trans­cend time and place: Con­flict, vi­o­lent wea­ther, plague, and pray­ers for loved ones and the na­tion.

Music: Dun­dee Scot­tish Psal­ter, 1615 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Oliver W. Holmes, Sr.


Father of mercies, heavenly Friend,
We seek Thy gracious throne;
To Thee our faltering prayers ascend,
Our fainting hearts are known!

From blasts that chill, from suns that smite,
From every plague that harms;
In camp and march, in siege and fight,
Protect our men-at-arms!

Though from our darkened lives they take
What makes our life most dear,
We yield them for their country’s sake
With no relenting tear.

Our blood their flowing veins will shed,
Their wounds our breasts will share;
Oh, save us from the woes we dread,
Or grant us strength to bear!

Let each unhallowed cause that brings
The stern destroyer cease,
The flaming angel fold his wings,
And seraphs whisper, Peace!

Thine are the scepter and the sword,
Stretch forth Thy mighty hand—
Reign Thou our kingless nation’s Lord
Rule Thou our throneless land!