For years Catholics have thanked God for the blessings of the past year by singing the traditional hymn the Te Deum on New Year's Eve.
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Catholics often sing the hymn the Te Deum to thank God for his blessings. When a Pope is elected or a particular event happens in a country, this hymn is often sung in cathedrals and churches.
New Year’s Eve is no exception. This year, Pope Francis will pray Vespers with a gathering of cardinals in St. Peter’s Basilica and they will sing the Te Deum in thanksgiving for the past year.
The Te Deum has been sung by Christians for centuries. One tradition claims that the hymn was written by Sts. Ambrose and Augustine on the occasion of St. Augustine’s baptism on Easter in 387. Modern historians date the hymn to the Latin West, suggesting that it was composed around the beginning of the 5th century.
The name comes from the hymn’s first words in the original Latin: Te Deum laudamus (You are God, we praise you). Sung to various melodies, the hymn can be chanted simply (as in the video below) or arranged for orchestras, like the versions composed by Mozart or Dvořák.
Ring in the New Year Catholic style, by singing the Te Deum!
YOU are God: we praise you;
You are the Lord; we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father:
All creation worships you.
To you all angels, all the powers of heaven,
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
The glorious company of apostles praise you.
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you.
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.
Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you;
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship,
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.
You, Christ, are the king of glory,
the eternal Son of the Father.
When you became man to set us free
you did not shun the Virgin’s womb.
You overcame the sting of death
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.
You are seated at God’s right hand in glory.
We believe that you will come and be our judge.
Come then, Lord, and help your people,
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints
to glory everlasting.
V. Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance.
R. Govern and uphold them now and always.
V. Day by day we bless you.
R. We praise your name for ever.
V. Keep us today, Lord, from all sin.
R. Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.
V. Lord, show us your love and mercy,
R. For we have put our trust in you.
V. In you, Lord, is our hope:
R. Let us never be put to shame.