Songs for the Season…”O Come Divine Messiah”

Advent is such a beautiful time, so rich with touching hymns, prayers, and readings, which call us to look forward and prepare for Jesus’ coming.

It is a shame, it seems to me, that our society is unable, or unwilling, to wait.  We start hearing Christmas music before the Advent season even begins.  On the other hand, I love some of the hymns we sing at Advent.  It’s too bad we only have four weeks or less to use them.

Though “O Come O Come Emmanuel” will always have a special place in my heart (and the First Sunday of Advent just wouldn’t be complete without its use in the liturgy), I’d like to focus this article an another favorite of mine: “O Come Divine Messiah.”

unnamed.jpgI had guessed it to be a more contemporary hymn and was surprised this morning to learn that it is actually a 16th century French carol.  Over one hundred years later, Abbé Simon J. Pellegrin gave it its French lyrics.  Then, in 1877, it was translated into English by Sister Mary of St. Philip, SND, who was one of the first English members of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur in Liverpool, England, according to one source on seasonal hymns.

If you find time, I would encourage you to look over the lyrics below.  They could be a rich source for reflection and meditation this Advent season and serve as a beautiful, touching, and inspiring alternative to “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” or “Frosty the Snowman.”

 

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

Dear Savior haste;
Come, come to earth,
Dispel the night and show your face,
And bid us hail the dawn of grace.

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

O Christ, whom nations sigh for,
Whom priest and prophet long foretold,
Come break the captive fetters;
Redeem the long-lost fold.

Dear Savior haste;
Come, come to earth,
Dispel the night and show your face,
And bid us hail the dawn of grace.

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

You come in peace and meekness,
And lowly will your cradle be;
All clothed in human weakness
Shall we your Godhead see.

Dear Savior haste;
Come, come to earth,
Dispel the night and show your face,
And bid us hail the dawn of grace.

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

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