Breviary Hymns and Missal Sequences, Corpus Christi, Sequence

Pictorial Lives of the Saints: Corpus ChristiPraise, O Sion, praise thy Saviour,
To thy Chief and Pastor singing,
Canticles of gladness raise;
Sing with all thy might and power,
For His merits pass all telling,
Him enough thou canst not praise.

Special object of our praises,
Bread both living and life-giving,
Offered us today we see;
That this to the Twelve was given,
At the holy Supper table,
We can never doubtful be.

Let our praise be full and hearty,
Let our joy be glad and happy,
Let our souls delight be great:
Now we keep a day most solemn,
For this banquet’s institution
We this day do celebrate.

At the New King’s Holy Table,
Doth the New Law’s New Passover
To the old Pasch put an end;
Mysteries new the ancient worship
Banish, Truth takes place of shadows,
Light the night away doth send.

What Christ did at that last Supper,
That He bade be done, that ever
Men might Him commemorate.
Guided by His sacred teaching,
We, for our salvation’s Victim,
Bread and wine do consecrate.

This is dogma taught to Christians,
Bread is to true Flesh transmuted,
Changed into Blood, is wine.
Seeing not, nor understanding,
What is outside nature’s order
Know for sure by faith divine.

Under diverse outward seemings,
Only signs and not substantial,
Wondrous Substances are there;
Bread is food, Blood drink is truly,
Yet in each Christ wholly dwelleth,
For both seemings He doth bear.

By the taker not divided,
He is neither cut nor broken,
For Himself entire He gives;
One may take Him, or a thousand,
One receives as much as many,
He is eaten, and yet lives.

Good men take Him, sinners take Him,
But the fruit of taking differs,
Life or death their acts portend,
Death to sinners, life to good men,
O then of a like reception,
See how diverse is the end.

When the Sacrament is broken,
Waver not, but still remember,
Under every fragment dwelleth
All whate’er the whole contains;
Of the Substance is no rending,
For the sign alone is broken,
None the less the state and stature
Of the Substance signed remains.

Then behold the Bread of angels,
Made the food of human mortals,
Truly tis the Bread of children,
It must not to dogs be given;
By the types it is prefigured,
It is Sacrificed with Isaac,
Like the Paschal Lamb tis offered,
Tis like manna come from Heaven.

O Good Shepherd, True Bread Living,
Jesus, show Thy mercy to us,
Do Thou feed us, Thou defend us,
Do Thou make us see all blessings,
In the land of those that live.
Thou who canst and knowest all things,
Thou who feedest here all mortals,
That we there may share Thy Table,
And be coheirs and companions,
Of the Saints, vouchsafe to give. Amen.

– translated by Archbishop Edward Gilpin Bagshawe, C.O., Bishop of Nottingham, England