Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Saint Peter and Saint Paul

With golden splendor and with roseate hues of morn,
O gracious Savior, Light of light, this day adorn,
Which brings to faithful servants hopes of that far home
Where saints and angels sing the tale of martyrdom.

Good Shepherd, Peter, unto whom the charge was given
To close or open ways of pilgrimage to heaven,
In sin's hard bondage held may we have grace to know
The full remission thou was granted to bestow.

O noble Teacher, Paul, we trust to learn to thee
Both earthly converse and the flight of ecstasy;
Till from the fading truths that now we know in part
We pass to fullness of delight for mind and heart.

Twin olive branches, pouring oil of gladness forth,
Your prayers shall aid us, that for all our earthly worth,
Believing, hoping, loving, we for whom ye plead,
This body dying, may attain to life indeed.

Latin, 6th cent.; tr. Thomas Alexander Lacey, 20th cent.?; alt.
Samuel Sebastian Wesley, 1872

The Latin text of this office hymn (Aurea luce et decore roseo) for the Feast of Saint Peter and Saint Paul was once attributed to Elpis, the daughter of Festus, a consul of Rome, but more recent scholarship finds no supporting evidence of this.

The second half of the second stanza gave me some pause, suggesting that Peter was the one to grant remission of sin, but I decided this refers only to his position as "keeper of the keys" to heaven.

Seven Years Ago: Saint Peter and Saint Paul

No comments: