13 December 2005
Blessed Saint Lucia day!
Today the holy Church commemorates the virgin and martyr Saint Lucia from Syracuse in Sicily. She was beheaded in 304 in the reign of Diocletian. In honor of the brave virgin martyr who was given grace to lay down her life for the heavenly Bridegroom, this hymn today from St. Ambrose:
O Jesu, thou the virgins' crown,
thy gracious ear to us bow down,
born of that Virgin whom alone
both Mother and a Maid we own.
In thee, their Bridegroom and their Lord,
the virgins find their bright reward,
and wheresoe'er thy footsteps wend
with hymns and praises thee attend.
O gracious Lord, we thee implore
thy grace into our minds to pour;
from all defilement keep us free,
and make us pure in heart for thee.
All praise to God the Father be,
all praise, eternal Son, to thee,
Whom with the Spirit we adore,
for ever and for evermore. (From *The Saint Ambrose Hymnal* #262)
Graciously hear us, O God of our salvation: that like as we do rejoice in the festival of blessed Lucia, thy holy virgin, so we may learn to follow her in all godly and devout affections; through Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord. (The Brotherhood Prayerbook)