April 19, 2013

My God I Love Thee / O Deus Ego Amo Te

Basilica of Bom Jesus - Goa, India

My God I Love Thee is a translation of O Deus Ego Amo Te, attributed to the great Jesuit missionary, St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552). It was likely written sometime in the 1540's during his time in India. The original text was likely composed as a sonnet in Spanish or Portuguese and then later translated into Latin, either by Xavier himself and/or by others, for there are several Latin versions. It has been translated into English many times. The most well known is the 1849 translation by Fr. Edward Caswall (1814-1878). In the Divine Office (1974) it is set to the tune, Everlasting Love. A more commonly used setting is to the tune, St. Fulbert (see 1st video). The 2nd video features a 2 stanza 18th century Latin hymn from the album, Angels and Saints At Ephesus performed by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles. In the Divine Office, My God I Love Thee is used on Holy Saturday.

Tune: St. Fulbert

My God I Love Thee (Translation by Fr. Caswall)

My God, I love Thee, not because
I hope for heaven thereby;
Nor yet since they who love Thee not
Must burn eternally.

Thou, O my Jesus, Thou didst me
Upon the Cross embrace;
For me didst bear the nails and spear,
And manifold disgrace;

And griefs and torments numberless,
And sweat of agony;
E’en death itself; and all for one
Who was Thine enemy.

Then why, O blessed Jesus Christ,
Should I not love Thee well,
Not for the sake of winning heaven,
Or of escaping hell;

Not with the hope of gaining aught,
Not seeking a reward;
But as Thyself hast loved me,
O ever-loving Lord?

E’en so I love Thee, and will love,
And in Thy praise will sing,
Solely because Thou art my God,
And my eternal King.

O Deus Ego Amo Te (18th Century Hymn)

O Deus, ego amo te,
Nec amo te ut salves me,
Nec quod qui te non diligent,
Æterno igne pereunt.

Ex cruces lingo germinat,
Qui pectus amor occupant,
Ex pansis unde brachiis,
Ad te amandum arripes. Amen.

Traditional Latin Text

O Deus, ego amo te,
Nec amo te, ut salves me,
Aut, quia non amantes te
Æterno punis igne.

Tu, tu, mi Jesu, totum me
Amplexus es in cruce;
Tuliste clavos, lanceam,
Multamque ignominiam,

Innumeros dolores,
Sudores, et angores,
Et mortem, et hæc propter me,
Ac pro me peccatore.

Cur igitur non amem te,
O Jesu amantissime,
Non, ut in cœlo salves me,
Aut ne æternum damnes me,

Nec præmii ullius spe;
Sed sicut tu amasti me?
Sic amo et amabo te,
Solum quia Rex meus es,
Et solum, quia Deus es.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comments are welcome, but they won't be published immediately. I moderate them first, just to weed out spam etc.

- Thanks