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Bride of Christ, whose glorious warfare
here on earth hath never rest;
lift thy voice, and tell the triumphs
of the holy and the blest:
joyous be the day we hallow,
feast of all the Saints on high,
earth and heaven together blending
in one solemn harmony.
First the blessèd Virgin-mother,
reunited to her Son,
leads the host of ransomed people,
who unfading crowns have won;
John the herald, Christ's forerunner,
more than prophet, heads his throng,
seer and patriarch responsive
unto psalmist in their song.
Lo, the twelve, majestic princes,
in the court of Jesus sit,
calmly watching, while the conflict
rages far beneath their feet:
lo, the martyrs, robed in crimson,
sign of life-blood freely spent,
finding life, because they lost it,
dwell in undisturbed content.
All the saintly host who witnessed
good confessions for his sake:
priest and deacon, world-renouncing,
of their Master's joy partake;
virgins to the Lamb devoted,
following with steadfast love,
bring their lilies and their roses
to the marriage feast above.
All, their happy lot fulfilling,
God omnipotent proclaim;
holy, holy, holy, crying,
glory to his holy Name!
So may God in mercy grant us
here to serve in holiness,
till he call us to the portion
which his saints in light possess.
Jean Baptiste de Contes (1601-1679); trans. John Ellerton (1826-1893)D
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