Sing, my tongue

On Maundy Thursday, the day we remember Jesus at his last supper with his disciples. In church, this night is sometimes focused on the "institution of the Eucharist" but also it is named for the "mandamus" - the new commandment, to love one another. Many churches have a time of footwashing on Maundy Thursday after the scene in the Gospel of John where the supper is only a sidebar to the footwashing.

On this night, it is traditional to sing the Pange Lingua, the hymn that begins Sing (or now), my tongue, the glorious battle. The words are from Thomas Aquinas. Here is a recording from the Liverpool Cathedral choir:

1 Now, my tongue, the mystery telling
of the glorious body sing,
and the blood, all price excelling,
which the Gentiles' Lord and King,
in a Virgin's womb once dwelling,
shed for this world's ransoming.

2 Given for us, and condescending
to be born for us below,
he, with us in converse blending,
dwelt the seed of truth to sow,
till he closed with wondrous ending
his most patient life of woe.

3 That last night, at supper lying,
'mid the Twelve, his chosen band,
Jesus, with the law complying,
keeps the feast its rites demand;
then, more precious food supplying,
gives himself with his own hand.

4 Word-made-flesh, true bread he maketh
by his word his flesh to be,
wine his blood; which whoso taketh
must from carnal thoughts be free:
faith alone, though sight forsaketh,
shows true hearts the mystery.

5 Therefore we, before him bending,
this great sacrament revere:
types and shadows have their ending,
for the newer rite is here;
faith, our outward sense befriending,
makes our inward vision clear.

6 Glory let us give and blessing
to the Father and the Son,
honour, might, and praise addressing,
while eternal ages run;
ever too his love confessing,
who, from both, with both is One. Amen.