Our Morning Offering – 29 June – The Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul
By St Ambrose (c 340-397)
Father and Doctor
This happy day is sanctified
As Martyr’s glory we recall,
The cross bedewed with Peter’s blood,
The sword that won a crown for Paul.
The triumph of their martyrdom
United these great souls in death,
Whose faith in Christ had crowned their lives
In service to their latest breath.
Saint Peter held the primacy,
Saint Paul would equal him in grace,
When once, as chosen instrument
The cause of Christ he would embrace
Once, Simon, leaving Rome, turned back
To give, by death, full praise to God,
That by the cross he too should tread
The self-same path his Master trod.
Now Rome exults, as well she may
And strives to give devotion’s due
To one who sealed with his own blood
His work as priest and shepherd true.
And who can count the crowds that come
As loving children to her gate,
Where nations’ teacher, holy Paul
Once dwelt and gladly met his fate.
Grant us, O Lord, the final grace
Of sharing in their joy above,
That with such princes we may praise
Your bounty and undying love.
Translation: The Benedictines of Saint Cecilia’s Abbey, Ryde, UK