Saturday, May 7, 2011

Collecting Manna: St Symeon the New Theologian

What is your immeasurable compassion, Savior?
How have you deigned that I be made your member,
I the impure one, the profligate, the prostitute?
How have you vested me with a brilliant robe (Lk.15.22),
flashing forth with the radiance of immortality,
and turning all my members to light?

For your body is immaculate and divine,
flashing forth entirely with the fire of your divinity,
unspeakably mixed and comingled.
And so You have given this to me, my God.

For this dirty and perishable tent
was united to your all-immaculate body,
and my blood mixed with your blood.
I was united, know, to your divinity also,
and I have become your most pure body,
a resplendent member, a truly holy member,
far-shining, and transparent, and gleaming.

I see the beauty; I look at the lustre;
I reflect the light of your grace,
and I am astonished at the mystery of the radiance,
and I am beside myself when I consider myself,
from what lowly condition I have come, what a marvel!

And I wait quietly and stand in awe of myself,
and I fear and reverence as though before You yourself...
For what works and actions
may I use these awesome and divine members?
Grant that I may both speak and practice what I preach.
O my craftsman, my sculptor, and my God!

(Divine Eros: Hymns of St. Symeon the New Theologian. Crestwood: St Vladimir's Seminary Press, 2010, p44)

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