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Hymn of the week: “Godhead Here in Hiding”

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The 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time.

“Godhead Here in Hiding” is an English poetic version of a 13th-century hymn composed by St. Thomas Aquinas. The original Latin hymn, “Adoro Te Devote,” is one of 5 Eucharistic hymns that Thomas wrote for the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, instituted in 1264 by Pope Urban IV. Thomas also used the text as a private prayer during daily adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

There have been several English texts based on Thomas’ original Latin. “Godhead Here in Hiding,” the most popular, was written by the English Jesuit poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, SJ, who died in 1889. Another English text is “Thee We Adore, O Hidden Savior, Thee,” an 1850 translation by James Russell Woodward.

In English or in Latin, St. Thomas Aquinas’ beloved Eucharistic hymn remains popular for church use or to accompany private prayer. Hear the original Latin version here:

 

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