THE TEXT OF THE STABAT MATER

The text of the Stabat Mater is printed below. This is one of over 60 translations of this famous Latin hymn that can also be recited in prayer, as discussed here. It is often used when praying the Stations of the Cross. The original Latin text of the Stabat Mater has also been set to music by such composers as Haydn, Rossini, and Poulenc.

At the cross her station keeping, 
Stood the mournful Mother weeping,
Close to Jesus to the last. 

Through her heart, His sorrow sharing, 
All His bitter anguish bearing, 
Now at length the sword had passed. 

Oh, how sad and sore distressed 
Was that Mother highly blest, 
Of the sole begotten One! 

Christ above in torment hangs. 
She beneath beholds the pangs 
Of her dying glorious Son. 

Is there one who would not weep,
Whelmed in miseries so deep, 
Christ's dear Mother to behold? 

Can the human heart refrain 
From partaking in her pain, 
In that Mother's pain untold? 

Bruised, derided, cursed, defiled, 
She beheld her tender Child,
All with bloody scourges rent. 

For the sins of His own nation, 
Saw Him hang in desolation 
Till His spirit forth He sent. 

O thou Mother: fount of love! 
Touch my spirit from above, 
Make my heart with thine accord. 

Make me feel as thou hast felt; 
Make my soul to glow and melt
With the love of Christ my Lord.

Holy Mother, pierce me through; 
In my heart each wound renew 
Of my Savior crucified. 

Let me share with thee His pain, 
Who for all my sins was slain, 
Who for me in torment died. 

Let me mingle tears with thee, 
Mourning Him who mourned for me, 
All the days that I may live. 

By the Cross with thee to stay; 
There with thee to weep and pray, 
Is all I ask of thee to give. 

Virgin of all virgins best, 
Listen to my fond request:
Let me share thy grief divine.

Let me to my latest breath, 
In my body bear the death 
Of that dying Son of thine. 

Wounded with His every wound, 
Steep my soul till it hath swooned 
In His very blood away.

Be to me, O Virgin, nigh, 
Lest in flames I burn and die,
In His awful Judgment day. 

Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence, 
Be Thy Mother my defense, 
Be Thy Cross my victory.

While my body here decays, 
May my soul Thy goodness praise, 
Safe in Paradise with Thee. Amen.

Anyway you read the text of the Stabat Mater, whether in this version or others, you can’t help being moved. May it stir in your heart a greater love and devotion both for our Lord and His Blessed Mother!


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