185. A Song, a Song of Gladness

A song, a song of gladness!
A song of thanks and praise!
The horn of our salvation
Hath GOD vouchsafed to raise!
A monarch true and faithful,
And glorious in her might,
To champion CHRIST’s own quarrel,
And Orthodoxy’s right!

Now manifest is glory;
Now grace and virtue shine:
Now joys the Church regaining
Her ornaments divine:
And girds them on in gladness,
As fits a festal day,
After long months of struggle,
Long years of disarray.

Now cries the blood for vengeance,
By persecutors poured,
Of them that died defending
The likeness of the LORD:
The likeness as a mortal
That He vouchsafed to take
Long years ago, in Bethlem,
Incarnate for our sake.

Awake, O Church, and triumph
Exult, each realm and land!
And open let the houses,
The ascetic houses stand!
And let the holy virgins
With joy and song take in
Their relics and their Icons,
Who died this day to win!

Assemble ye together
So joyous and so bold,
The ascetic troops, and pen them
Once more within the fold!
If strength again he gather,
Again the foe shall fall:
If counsel he shall counsel,
Our GOD shall scatter all.

The LORD, the LORD hath triumphed:
Let all the world rejoice!
Hushed is the turmoil, silent
His servants’ tearful voice:
And the One Faith, the True Faith,
Goes forth from East to West,
Enfolding, in its beauty,
The earth as with a vest.

They rise, the sleepless watchmen
Upon the Church’s wall;
With yearning supplication
On GOD the LORD they call:
And He, though long time silent,
Bowed down a gracious ear,
His people’s earnest crying
And long complaint to hear.

Sing, sing for joy, each desert!
Exult, each realm of earth!
Ye mountains, drop down sweetness!
Ye hillocks, leap for mirth!
For CHRIST the WORD, bestowing
His blessed peace on men,
In Faith’s most holy union
Hath knit His Church again.

The GOD of vengeance rises:
And CHRIST attacks the foe,
And makes His servants mighty
The wicked to o’erthrow.
And now Thy condescension
In boldness may we hymn,
And now in peace and safety
Thy sacred Image limn.

O LORD of loving kindness,
How wondrous are Thy ways!
What tongue of man suffices
Thy gentleness to praise?
Because of Thy dear Image
Men dared Thy Saints to kill,
Yet didst Thou not consume them,
But bear’st their insults still.

Thou Who has fixed unshaken
Thy Church’s mighty frame,
So that hell-gates shall never
Prevail against the same;—
Bestow upon Thy people
Thy peace, that we may bring
One voice, one hymn, one spirit,
To glorify our King!

Author: Theodore of the Studium (826)
Translator: Neale, J. M. (John Mason), 1818-1866

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