Home » Mourning Literature & Custom » The Angel of Patience by J.G. Whittier

The Angel of Patience by J.G. Whittier

I am lucky enough to have in my personal library a book entitled ‘The Mourner’s Friend or Sighs of Sympathy For Those Who Sorrow’. It is a collection of prose and verse compiled to give comfort to the grieving. Edited by J.B. Syme, published in 1852 by S.A. Howland in Worcester, Mass, USA; its contents are predominantly by American authors. My copy of the book has some water damage, ageing paper, and precarious binding, so before it deteriorates my project to preserve the words of the authors will find its way here on the MOLAM blog. 

The Angel of Patience
A free paraphrase of the German.

To weary hearts, to mourning homes,
God’s meekest angel gently comes :
No power has he to banish pain,
Or give us back our lost again ;
And yet, in tenderest love, our dear
And heavenly Father sends him here.

There’s quiet in that angel’s glance,-
There’s rest in his still countenance :
He mocks no grief with idle cheer,
Nor wounds with words the mourner’s ear;
But ills and woes he may not cure,-
He kindly learns us to endure.

Angel of Patience ! sent to calm
Our feverish brow with cooling palm,-
To lay the storms of hope and fear,
And reconcile life’s smile and tear;
The throbs of wounded pride to still,
And make our own our Father’s will.

Oh, thou who mournest on thy way,
With longings for the close of day !
He walks with thee, -that angel kinds,-
And gently whispers, “Be resigned !
Bear up, bear on,-the end shall tell
The dear Lord ordereth all things well.”

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