Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Brightness of the Father's Glory!--A Morning Hymn by St. Ambrose of Milan (340-397)

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Brightness of the Father's glory,
    Spread the splendor of Thy light;
Radiant Fountain, Dayspring dawning,
    Banish now the shades of night!

O true Sun, arise within us,
    Shining with Thy steady beam;
O plant deep within our senses
    God the Holy Spirit's flame!

God the Father, too, we worship,
    Father of all-powerful grace;
Glorious Father everlasting,
    From our hearts all treason chase!

Breathe Thy mighty strength within us,
    Break the pride of Satan's power;
Turn our hardships into triumphs;
    Grant us wisdom every hour.

Guide our minds, uphold our thinking,
    Keep our limbs for service fit;
Feed our faith with love's pure burning,
    Purged from malice and deceit.

Christ our Lord, be bread for eating;
    Faith, our wine for drinking be:
May we taste the joyous Spirit,
    Drunk with His sobriety!

May this new day pass in gladness,
    Modest like the dawn's fresh bloom,
Faith like midday shining brightly,
    Thoughts untouched by evening gloom.

Now the dawn with splendor rises;
    Jesus is our only Dawn:
Son unveiled by heavenly Father,
    Father in the Logos known.

St. Ambrose of Milan


Te Deum

The Te Deum (also known as Ambrosian Hymn or A Song of the Church) is an early Christian hymn of praise. The title is taken from its opening Latin words, Te Deum laudamus, rendered as "Thee, O God, we praise". Authorship is traditionally ascribed to Saints Ambrose and Augustine, on the occasion of the latter's baptism by the former in AD 387.

The hymn follows the outline of the Apostles' Creed, mixing a poetic vision of the heavenly liturgy with its declaration of faith. Calling on the name of God immediately, the hymn proceeds to name all those who praise and venerate God, from the hierarchy of heavenly creatures to those Christian faithful already in heaven to the Church spread throughout the world. The hymn then returns to its credal formula, naming Christ and recalling his birth, suffering and death, his resurrection and glorification. At this point the hymn turns to the subjects declaiming the praise, both the universal Church and the singer in particular, asking for mercy on past sins, protection from future sin, and the hoped-for reunification with the elect. (reference)