28 September 2015

Winkworth: St. Michael and All Angels

Deus, qui miro ordine Angelorum ministeria hominumque dispensas: concede propitius; ut a quibus tibi ministrantibus in caelo semper assistitur, ab his in terra vita rostra muniatur, etc.

Some angels in Ely Cathedral, England

PRAISE and thanks to Thee be sung,
Mighty God, in sweetest tone !
Lo ! from every land and tongue,
Nations gather round Thy Throne,
Praising Thee, that Thou dost send,
Daily from Thy Heaven above,
Angel-messengers of love,
Who Thy threaten'd Church defend.
Who can offer worthily,
Lord of Angels, praise to Thee !

'Tis your office, Spirits bright,
Still to guard us night and day,
And before your heavenly might,
Powers of darkness flee away ;
Ever doth your unseen host
Camp around us, and avert
All that seeks to do us hurt,
Curbing Satan's malice most.
Lord, who then can worthily
For such goodness honour Thee !

And ye come on ready wing—
When we drift toward sheer despair,
Seeing nought where we might cling,
Suddenly, lo, ye are there !
And the wearied heart grows strong,
As an angel strengthen'd Him,
Fainting in the garden dim,
'Neath the world's vast woe and wrong.
Lord, who then can worthily
For such mercy honour Thee !

Right and seemly is it then
We should glory, that our God
Hath such honour put on men,
That He sends o'er earth abroad
Princes of the realm above,
Champions, who by day and night,
Shield us with His holy might ;
Come, behold how great His love !
Lord, who then can worthily
For such favour honour Thee !

Praise and thanks to Thee be sound,
Mighty God, in sweetest tone.
Lo ! from every land and tongue,
Nations gather round Thy throne,
Praising Thee that Thou dost send,
Hourly from Thy glorious sphere,
Angels down to help us here,
And Thy threaten'd Church defend.
Let us henceforth worthily,
Lord of Angels, honour Thee.

RIST. 1655
Catherine Winkworth, translator
Lyra Germanica

O EVERLASTING God, who hast ordained and constituted the ministries of Angels and mortals in a wonderful order : Mercifully grant that, as Thy Holy Angels always serve and worship Thee in Heaven, so by Thy appointment they may succour and defend us on Earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.