Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Wars and Tumults Fill the Earth

Wars and tumults fill the earth;
Men the fear of God despise;
Retribution, vengeance, wrath,
Brood upon the angry skies.

Holy Pius! Pope sublime!
Whom, in this most evil time-
Whom, of saints in bliss, can we
Better call to aid than thee?

None more mightily than thou
Hath, by holy deed or word,
Through the spacious earth below
Spread the glory of the Lord.

Thine it was, O pontiff brave!
Pontiff of eternal Rome!
From barbaric yoke to save
Terror-stricken Christendom.

When Lepanto's gulf beheld,
Strewn upon its waters fair,
Turkey's countless navy yield
To the power of thy prayer.

Who meanwhile with prophet's eye
Didst the distant battle see,
And announce to standers-by
That same moment's victory.

Mightier now and glorified,
Hear the suppliant cry we pour;
Crush rebellion's haughty pride;
Quell the din of rising war.

At thy prayer may golden peace
Down to earth descend again:
License, discord, trouble, cease;
Justice, truth and order reign.

To the Lord of endless days,
One Almighty Trinity,
Sempiternal glory, praise,
Honor, might, and blessing be.

Such a nice hymn!  And such a great feast: we celebrate this holy Pope, who defended Christendom when she was fain to fall, beset by malignant ravening foes within and without, and who - concerned rightly to espouse the Church to her true Bridegroom, Christ - as heir of Christ's chief Apostles, yea, as Christ's very Vicar, did with all care restore and uphold the solemn rites of Divine worship whereby the nuptial union between the soul and God is sacramentally effected.  It is for this reason that his Collect speaks of his crushing the foes of Holy Church, and his effecting the restoration of Divine worship, begging at his intercession that we may adhere to the correct rites of the latter, so as to more surely overcome the former.

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