This hymn is for Matins on Sundays from Epiphany until Lent and from September 28 to November 26 in the Extraordinary Form. In the Ordinary Form, this hymn is for Office of Readings on Sundays I & III in Ordinary Time in the Ordinary Form.
This day the first of days was made,
When God in light the world arrayed;
Or when His Word arose again,
And, conquering death, gave life to men.
Slumber and sloth drive far away;
Earlier arise to greet the day;
And ere its dawn in heaven unfold
The heart’s desire to God be told.
Unto our prayer that He attend,
His all creating power extend,
And still renew us, lest we miss
Through earthly stain our heavenly bliss.
That us, who here this day repair
To keep the apostles’ time of prayer,
And hymn the quiet hours of morn,
With blessèd gifts He may adorn.
For this, Redeemer, Thee we pray
That Thou wilt wash our sins away,
And of Thy lovingkindness grant
Whate’er of good our spirits want.
That exiles here awhile in flesh
Some earnest may our souls refresh
Of that pure life for which we long,
Some foretaste of the heavenly song.
O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ, Thine only Son;
Who, with the Holy Ghost and Thee,
Doth live and reign eternally.
Words: Pope St, Gregory the Great (I), 6th Century; tr. Yattendon Hymnal.
Tune: “Andernach” Andernach Gesangbuch, 1608.
The original Latin text of this hymn may be found here.