Saturday, September 29, 2012

Saint MIchael and All Angels

The feast day of Saint Michael and All Angels, also known as Michaelmas, is one of the very few church feasts which is allowed to be transferred to the nearest Sunday in the Episcopal Church, so we will observe it tomorow at my chuirch with appropriate hymns, though we will not be singing this one, which I rather like, by two masters of English hymnody, Reginald Heber and Samuel Sebastian Wesley.

O Captain of God’s host, whose awesome might
Led forth to war the arm├Ęd seraphim,
And from the starry height,
Subdued in burning light,
Cast down that ancient dragon fierce and grim.

Saint Michael, Christ, we laud in solemn lays,
And all the angels of the crystal sky,
Who ’mid thy glory’s blaze
Their ceaseless anthem raise
And gird thy throne in faithful ministry.

Therefore with angels and archangels we
To thy dear love our thankful chorus raise,
And tune our songs to thee
Who art, and art to be,
And, endless as thy mercies, sound thy praise.

Reginald Heber, 1837; alt.
Samuel Sebastian Wesley, 1872

The (brief) story of Saint Michael and the dragon is from Revelation 12:7-12, one of the scripture readings for the day.

P.S. The image above is from a painting fo St. Michael fighting the dragon by the fifteenth-century painter Jean Fouquet.

Four Years Ago: Saint Michael and All Angels

Three Years Ago: Saint Michael and All Angels

Two Years Ago: Saint Michael and All Angels

No comments: