Breviary Hymns and Missal Sequences, Saint Vincent of Paul, Vespers

The good God who doth change little things into great,
Who all others excels, and is Greatestand Best,
O Saint Vincent, hath also thy lowness on high
Lifted up, as He placed thee mid Choirs of the Blest.

Poor and low was thy birth, neath a poor cottage roof,
But this little eclipse soon exchanged we shall see
For great splendour, for poverty’s loving embrace
Is preparing thee now her protector to be.

That thou may’st to the wretched be taught to bring aid,
Thou endurest besides cruel slavery’s pains,
But the truth, which thy master subjects to the Faith,
Setteth free at the same time thyself from thy chains.

Then how great dost thou show in the light of thy works,
For thy labours Christ’s beautiful Spouse do adorn,
To the clergy the honour, of old to them due,
And strong faith to the people, so careless, return.

For the orphan and rustic, the poor and the sick,
And all people, do thee as their father revere,
For thou helpest all gladly; their bodily ills
Thou relievest, their souls to their God bringest near.

Thou art called to take part in the councils of kings,
In Church things they consult the sure light of thy mind,
Thou despisest the honour, but through thee the poor find
Sure assistance, the state sure enlightenment,

Greatest praise to the Father who loveth the poor,
And the Son, who to sick men gives healing from Heaven,
And to Thee, who so sweetly refreshest our souls,
With Thy grace, Holy Spirit, like praises be given. Amen.

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