Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Hymns for May 24th

My work computer is down at the moment. Something is wrong with the power. So here is something I saw this morning that was interesting.

From the Monastic Diurnal, which I used this morning for Lauds, comes this translation of the Marian hymn Te Redemptoris to Our Lady Help of Christians:

Mother of our Lord and Savior,
First in beauty as in power,
Glory of the Christian nations,
Ready help in trouble's hour.

Though the gates of hell against us,
With profoundest fury rage;
Though the ancient foe assault us,
And his fiercest battle wage;

Naught can hurt the pure in spirit,
Who upon thine aid rely;
At thy hand secure of gaining
Strength and mercy from on high.

Safe beneath thy mighty shelter,
Though a thousand hosts combine,
All must fall or flee before us,
Scattered by an arm divine.

Firm as once on holy Sion,
David's tower reared its height;
With a glorious rampart girded,
And with glistening armor bright.

So th'Amlighty's Virgin Mother
Stands in strength for everymore;
From Satanic hosts defending
All who her defense implore.

Through the long unending ages,
Blessed Trinity, to Thee!
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!
Praise and perfect glory be.

The Vespers hymn is greater still...the imagery is incredible. This is the translation of Saepe dum Christi:

Oftimes, when hemm'd around by hostile arms,
The Christian people lay all sore dismayed,

Faith's eye hath traced the Virgin gliding down,
To lend her loving aid.

So speak the monuments of olden time,
And shrines that bright with votive spoils appear;
So speak the festivals in her sweet praise,
Returning year by year.

Now for new mercies a new song ascends,
While with our Lady's ensigns all unfurled,
Rome in procession long high triumph holds,
And with great Rome the world.

Oh, happy day! on which Saint Peter's throne
Receives the faith's great Ruler back again;
Returning from his banishment, in peace
O'er Christendom to reign.

Ye youths and maidens,
priests and people all!
Pour out your grateful hearts on this glad day,
Striving with all your strength, to Heaven's high Queen
Her well-earned praise to pay.

Virgin of virgins, Jesus' Mother blest!
Add yet another mercy to the past;
And help our Pastor all his flock to lead
Safe into heaven at last.

To Thee, great Trinity,
be endless praise,
Blessing, and majesty, and glory due;
To Thee may we our hearts and voices raise;
Al the long ages through.
"The whole truth is generally the ally of virtue; a half-truth is always the ally of some vice." - G.K. Chesterton