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As they have done, to our eternal shame,
And the scandal of thy name. Let's as door-keepers in thine house attend, Rather than the throne of wickedness ascend.
THE Church's Bible-Clerk attends
Her Utensils, and ends
Her Prayers with Amen;
Brings in the Elements,
And takes them out again ; Is humble-minded, and industrious handed, Doth nothing of himself, but as commanded.
All that the Vessels of the Lord
Do bear with one accord
Must study to be pure,
Do any spot espy,
He cannot it endure ;
Psalms then are always tuned best,
When there is most exprest
The holy Penman's heart :
That wants, or doth not bear
The first and chiefest part. Voices, without affections answerable, When best, to God are most abominable.
Though in the blessed Sacraments
The outward Elements
Are but as husks and shells ;
If even those send forth
Some Aromatic smells, Will not esteem it waste, lest, Judas-like, Through Mary's side he Christ himself should strike.
Lord, without whom we cannot tell
How to speak or think, well,
Lend us thy helping hand,
Not to ourselves but thee,
And answer thy command :
THE OVERSEER OF THE POOR.
The Church's Almoner takes care, that none
In their necessity
Shall unprovided be
Whom careless Idleness,
Or riotous excess,
Thou gracious Lord, rich in thyself, dost give
To all men liberally,
We move, and have our being :
But there is more than seeing. For the poor with thee : they are thy special charge ; To them thou dost thine heart and hand enlarge.
Four sorts of poor there are, with whom thou deal’st.
Though always differently,
With such indifferency,
All those whom thou dost wound :
If there be any found
Some in the world are poor, but rich in faith :
Their outward poverty
A plentiful supply
And their estate is blest,
In this above the rest,
Some poor in spirit in the world are rich,
Although not many such :
And no man needs to grutch Their happiness, who to maintain that pitch,
Have a hard task in hand,
Nor easily can withstand The strong temptations that attend on riches : Mountains are more exposed to storms than ditches.
Some rich in the world are spiritually poor,
Who may perchance have place In the Church upon earth ; but Heaven's door
Too narrow is to admit
Such camels in at it,
Some spiritually poor, and destitute
Of grace in the world are poor,
Begging from door to door, Accursed both in God's and man's repute,
Till by their miseries
Tutor’d they learn to prize Hungering and thirsting after righteousness, Whilst they're on earth, their greatest happiness.
Lord, make me poor in spirit, and relieve
Me how thou wilt thyself,
No want of worldly pelf
I know thine alms are best :
But, above all the rest, Condemn me not unto the hell of riches, Without thy grace to countercharm the witches.
The Church's guardian takes care to keep
Her buildings always in repair, Unwilling that any decay should creep
On them, before he is aware.
Lord, thou not only supervisor art
Of all our works, but in all those, Which we dare own, thine is the chiefest part ; For there is none of us, that knows
How to do well ;
Nor can we tell
That which we think ourselves to mend, we mar,
And often make it ten times worse :
Great odds it is
That we shall miss
'Tis strange we so much dote upon our own
Deformity, and others scorn ;
Choose to lay by Such decency and order, as did place us In highest esteem, and guard as well as grace us.
Is not thy daughter glorious within,
When clothed in needle-work without ?