Scripture Verse

How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land? Psalm 137:4


Charles Coffin (1676–1749)

Words: Charles Cof­fin, in the Pa­ris Bre­vi­ary, 1736 (Te lae­ta mun­di Con­di­tor). Trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by the com­pil­ers of Hymns An­cient and Mo­dern, based on trans­la­tions by John Chand­ler (Thou Great Cre­at­or, Art Pos­sessed) & John M. Neale (Mak­er of Earth, to Thee Alone).

Music: St. Gre­go­ry from the Cho­ral­buch, by Jo­hann B. Kö­nig, 1738 (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pic­ture of Kö­nig (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),


Creator of the world, to Thee
And end­less rest of joy be­longs;
And hea­ven­ly choirs are ev­er free
To sing on high their fes­tal songs.

But we are fall­en crea­tures here,
Where pain and sor­row dai­ly come;
And how can we in ex­ile drear
Sing out, as they, sweet songs of home?

O Fa­ther, who dost pro­mise still
That they who mourn shall bless­èd be,
Grant us to weep for deeds of ill
That ban­ish us so long from Thee.

But weep­ing, grant us faith to rest
In hope up­on Thy lov­ing care;
Till Thou re­store us, with the blest,
Their songs of praise in Heav’n to share.

To Fa­ther, Son and Ho­ly Ghost,
The God whom Heav’n and earth ad­ore,
From men and from the an­gel host
Be praise and glo­ry ev­er­more.