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Hymn of the week: “Come, Holy Ghost”

J-P Mauro - published on 05/20/18

Let these nuns serenade you for Pentecost Sunday.

Come, Holy Ghost, Creator blest,
And in our hearts take up thy rest;
Come with thy grace and heav’nly aid
To fill the hearts which thou hast made,

We have come to the end of the Easter Season with the arrival of Pentecost Sunday. For this week, we chose a very old hymn called “Come, Holy Ghost.” What better way is there to celebrate the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles than with a hymn sung to the Holy Spirit?

The text was originally written by the Frankish Benedictine monk Rabanus Maurus in the early 800s. A consummate theologian, he famously wrote an encyclopedia, De rerum naturis (“On the Natures of Things”), as well as treatises on education and grammar, and commentaries on the Bible. Eventually, he was named archbishop of Mainz, in Germany.

This hymn was not translated into English until the mid-1800s, when clergyman and author Edward Caswall published it. When his wife died, he left the Church of England and converted to the Roman Catholic Church. After his conversion he focused his on clerical duties and a loving interest in the poor, the sick, and in little children. He continued to write poetry until his death in 1878.

This recording was made by members of the Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen, a community of teaching nuns. They produce albums of sacred music in order to raise funds for their community and attached private school. Learn more on their website.

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