November 17, 2012

O Come, All Ye Faithful

O Come, Let Us Adore Him

O Come, All Ye Faithful is an adaptation of the original 18th century Latin carol: Adeste Fideles attributed to John Francis Wade (1711-1786). Wade had fled to France after the Jacobite Uprising of 1745 where he remained the rest of his life, living with other exiled English Catholics, continuing to write and teach music for the Church. In 1751 he published Adeste Fideles set to the same tune sung today, although the authorship of the music is not clear. The text was translated and expanded in 1841 by Fr. Frederick Oakeley (1802-1880), a convert to Catholicism from the Anglican Church who was a member of Cardinal Newman's community at Littlemore. In the Liturgy of the Hours, O Come, All Ye Faithful is used during Christmas.

O COME, ALL YE FAITHFUL by John F. Wade, 1743 (Public Domain)

1. O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem.
Come and behold Him, born the King of angels;

Refrain:  O come, let us adore Him,
               O come, let us adore Him,
               O come, let us adore Him,
               Christ the Lord.

2. True God of true God, Light from Light Eternal,
Lo, He shuns not the Virgin’s womb;
Son of the Father, begotten, not created;

3. Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation;
O sing, all ye citizens of heaven above!
Glory to God, all glory in the highest;

4. See how the shepherds, summoned to His cradle,
Leaving their flocks, draw nigh to gaze;
We too will thither bend our joyful footsteps;

5. Lo! star led chieftains, Magi, Christ adoring,
Offer Him incense, gold, and myrrh;
We to the Christ Child bring our hearts’ oblations.

6. Child, for us sinners poor and in the manger,
We would embrace Thee, with love and awe;
Who would not love Thee, loving us so dearly?

7. Yea, Lord, we greet Thee, born this happy morning;
Jesus, to Thee be glory given;
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing.

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