This second part of the seven-part mass “Glory of the Lord” is a look at desperation and trust. That is to say, it is a question-response imagining of my doubt in the face of supreme suffering and fear. What comes from this is not an utter loss of faith, but rather, trust in the supremely good mystery of God. As a strange inverse of the roles from the first part (priest/congregation), this part places the role of God in the voices and presence of the congregation and the role of the suffering in the person of the celebrant. I also wanted to emphasize–with this part and all parts of the mass–the ongoing nature of redemption and renewal. Originally, the final line to this part was “I have done this that you may believe; I have done this that you may live.” I later changed it to the present tense, however, knowing that the message is one not static but forever pertinent and forever powerful.

Here, then, is part two of my mass, The Enunciation of Mystery:

P. What am I to do, O Lord?
Will you not vouchsafe my life within me?
For angst flies fast upon me
And the dangers of this world
Are as spears; they pierce even my sides.

R. Your doubts are as the rains;
Even the deluge shall wane
And the flood dry up.
This I do, that you may believe.
This I do, that you may live.

P. Though I pray to you, my God
My enemies charge ever onward;
In my weakness, they grow strong;
In my fear their anger rages.
Where is my stronghold, Adonai?

R. Your heart you have abandoned
And the stir of your soul is as soft
Even as a whisper. Listen!
This I do, that you may believe.
This I do, that you may live.

P. What hope have I to hear?
Even so evil bellows, and the wings
Of death beat as drums upon the air.
My foe is near to me;
There is darkness all around me.

R. Your trust is shallow as the grave;
Am I not the resurrection and the light?
Save heart; rejoice within you; I am near.
This I do, that you may believe.
This I do, that you may live.

P. O my God, where is my enemy?
Where has the evil of this day retreated?
I am saved; though I believed it not.
And You have lifted me up,
Even in the darkest of my hours.

R. This I do, that you may believe.
This I do, that you may live.