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Ash Wednesday Hymn
Words & Music by Derek Boemler (Minneapolis, MN)

Written in collaboration at a UA Creative Session


From Derek Boemler, about the hymn:

I’ve had in the back of my mind for a couple of years now that I wanted to write an Ash Wednesday hymn. This hymn in particular is inspired mostly by the Ash Wednesday liturgical ideas of penitence and considering the fleeting nature of life, but I’ve also included nods to the funeral liturgy as well as Psalms 6 and 51. And I can’t help in my songwriting to bring our minds to the hope of the resurrection.

Derek Boemler is an Online Team Leader with United Adoration. A voracious reader, he leads book clubs and online discussions that gather artists online and foster community through intelligent discourse. He also leads online creative sessions, and was working on this song in the February 13th creative session this week.

O God of mercy, God of grace,
Our tears have left a bitter taste.
This hunger and fragility
But shows us our mortality.
Do you not hear us as we weep
and day and night are kept from sleep?
Arrest and calm our anxious hearts,
and comfort, joy, and rest impart.

Oh cleanse and pardon us from sin,
and purify our hearts within.
Lord, mercifully grant that we
May ever your forgiveness see.
Have mercy on us sinners, Lord,
For mercy buys what grace affords.
No treasure richer can we find
than what was bought for all mankind.

Oh ash to ash and dust to dust.
Are all not claimed by moth and rust?
Oh dust to dust and ash to ash.
Lord, give us something that will last.
When death and famine are no more,
and pestilence has gone with war
Oh let our bodies rise instead.
Lord bring new life from what was dead.

Hosanna to the King of Kings
Who peace and our salvation brings!
Who came to triumph o’er the grave,
Who with the sword of justice saves.
Arise and mend our brokenness,
And leave us not in our distress.
Let glory wash our tears away,
And turn this night to endless day.

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