My God, I Love Thee, Not Because

Representative Text

1 My God, I love Thee; not because
I hope for heav'n thereby,
nor yet for fear that loving not
I might forever die;
but for that Thou didst all mankind
upon the cross embrace;
for us didst bear the nails and spear,
and manifold disgrace;

2 And griefs and torments numberless,
and sweat of agony;
e'en death itself, and all for man,
who was Thine enemy.
Then why, most loving Jesus Christ,
should I not love Thee well?
Not for the sake of winning heav'n,
nor any fear of hell;

3 Not with the hope of gaining aught,
nor seeking a reward,
but as Thyself hast loved me,
O ever loving Lord!
E'en so I love Thee, and will love,
and in Thy praise will sing,
solely because Thou art my God
and my eternal King!

Source: Hymns to the Living God #234

Author (attributed to): St. Francis Xavier

St. Francis Xavier, the great missionary saint of the Roman Catholic Church, was the son of Don John Giasso and Donna Maria d'Azpilqueta y Xavier; he was born at the castle Xavier, near Pampeluna, Spain, on April 7, 1506, and is known to history by his mother's name. At the age of eighteen he entered the University of Paris, where in due course he graduated, and then devoted himself to teaching. It was here that he became acquainted with Ignatius Loyola the founder of the Jesuits, who was then planning the colossal work which he afterwards accomplished. Xavier became one of the first nine of Loyola's converts, and the most enthusiastic of the little band. The date of the formation of the Order of the Jesuits is given as Aug. 15, 1534, and t… Go to person page >

Translator: Edward Caswall

Edward Caswall was born in 1814, at Yately, in Hampshire, where his father was a clergyman. In 1832, he went to Brasenose College, Oxford, and in 1836, took a second-class in classics. His humorous work, "The Art of Pluck," was published in 1835; it is still selling at Oxford, having passed through many editions. In 1838, he was ordained Deacon, and in 1839, Priest. He became perpetural Curate of Stratford-sub-Castle in 1840. In 1841, he resigned his incumbency and visited Ireland. In 1847, he joined the Church of Rome. In 1850, he was admitted into the Congregation of the Oratory at Birmingham, where he has since remained. He has published several works in prose and poetry. --Annotations of the Hymnal, Charles Hutchins, M.A. 1872… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: My God, I love Thee, not because
Title: My God, I Love Thee, Not Because
Latin Title: O Deus, ego amo Te
Translator: Edward Caswall (1849)
Author (attributed to): St. Francis Xavier
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain



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