Hymn to Saint Louis the King
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451

    Today the earth with heaven sings
    The praises of the King of kings.
    For Christ, who governs time and space
    Gave Louis strength to rule by grace.

    Saint Louis held the land in peace.
    He made the fruits of earth increase.
    Most brave, when called to go to war—
    Most generous to all the poor.

    He served the needy of the land.
    He fed them all with his own hand.
    He took them in and washed their feet
    And gave them his own food to eat.

    He turned from greed and sinful pride;
    With prayer each labor sanctified.
    He feared no evil, nor the sword,
    But firmly trusted in the Lord.

    He taught his family the same:
    To love and serve God’s holy name,
    To flee from sin, to love the good—
    The royal road of fatherhood.

    To God the Father, Spirit, Son,
    All praise eternally be done.
    And may Saint Louis pray today
    That we may follow in his way.

    c. 2008 Kathleen Pluth. Permission is given for parish use August 22-25, 2009. All other rights reserved.

    (I think G would like to know that this is a rewrite of a first-person hymn that began, I am the king. I have lots of bling. I like to wear my signet ring.)
  • G
    Posts: 1,396
    I would indeed!
    I thank you, because the rhythm of your (sadly!) rejected lyric immediately suggested a tune to me, and so now i have realized how useful that tune would be for any number of hymntexts.

    Do you know "I Am So Proud" from Mikado?

    Also, I never think of "bling" when i am casting about for rhymes, but now I shall.

    I think there's an Epiphany hymn to be written with the phrase
    "Our gifts we bring
    Of Neosporin, Glade and bling."

    I wonder, does Glade make a frankincense scented room spray?

    Another thought - has product placement ever been explored as a way for cash-strapped churches to make ends meet?

    (Save the Liturgy, save the World)
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451
    I wonder if Aristotle's photoshop skills are up to the product placement task?

    Said one king to the other king
    Load Neosporin, Glad and bling
    On the camel! On the camel!

  • Kathy, it is a wonderful hymn for King St. Louis!
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451
    Thank you!

    However, I'm not entirely pleased with it. Here are some of its problems.

    verse 1, line 4: "Gave" is an accented word in an unaccented position. This happens again in lines 1, 3 and 4 of verse 2.
    verse 2, line 2: No man can make the fruits of earth increase. Louis governed the farming industry wisely and there was an economic boon, but "God grants the increase," as Scripture says. So that's actually a theological error, on the subject of cooperation with grace.
    verse 2, line 3: "most-brave" contains an unsingable complex of consonants
    verse 3, line 2: of course he didn't "feed them all with his own hand." There would have been too many. I just couldn't think of another phrasing, so I allowed an inaccuracy of meaning

    etc etc

    No one of these errors is egregious. Similar metrical problems happen in Watts and Wesley, after all, and in Hopkins they're frequent. But there are too many erros for a single hymn. No matter how well-conceived--and I wouldn't say that this is *very* well-conceived, if for no other reason than the verses are simply serial, lacking an overarching structure, though containing the formulas of traditional beginning and doxological ending --this text could never be a truly good hymn unless I were to polish it up considerably.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451

    Feel free to use for the feast of St. Louis, 2010.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,762

    Nice job. A couple of ideas for you to use or discard as you will:

    Saint Louis held the land in peace,
    *And saw* the fruits of earth increase.
    Most brave, when called to go to war—
    Most generous to all the poor.

    He served the needy of the land,
    *And they were fed by his command*.
    He took them in and washed their feet
    And gave them his own food to eat.

    * * *

    And, regarding awkward stress placement, it can help to use a tune that blurs rather than emphasizes the iambic/trochaic distinction: for example, Danby (OK, it's a favorite of mine among the underused tunes for precisely this reason, and it's in the public domain, because it was in the 1906 Hymnal).
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 882

    Planning a Mass to celebrate the Feast of Saint Louis the King (actually a Solemnity in the city of Saint Louis).

    There are no propers cited in the Graduale 1972. What to do? Other than selecting some antiphons from the common of Holy Men, are there any antiphons or hymns traditionally associated with Saint Louis?

    To Jesus Christ Our Sovereign King comes to mind as a good recessional hymn since it was written by a local priest.

    Kathy, may I use your hymn for morning prayer or vespers?
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451

    If anyone needs a Spanish first verse, I have one somewheres and will find it if asked. Cheers, God bless.
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 882
    That would be awesome, as it happens to fall on Spanish Mass Tuesday this year!
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,451
    Not sure what I was thinking of regarding syllabification in line 2, but here ya go.

    Al Rey de reyes cantemos
    canciones de gracias dad a Dios.
    Alabémosle por su don:
    San Luis, nuestro gran patron.

    Our Spanish congregation assured me that this made sense, but that could be local. Amend as required.
    Thanked by 1Earl_Grey
  • Andrew_Malton
    Posts: 1,117
    This is my parish's patronal hymn, words written for our 125th anniversary, music written before 1962, I believe originally for a hymn to St Michael Archangel.
    Thanked by 1Earl_Grey
  • Earl Grey, in the 1979 Graduale (p 595), I see the following listed for St Louis:

    Introit: In virtute tua...laetabitur rex
    Gradual: Iustus ut palma
    Alleluia: Beatus vir qui suffert
    Offertory: Veritas meaj
    Communion: Beautus servus

    Perhaps chant books with special supplements either for France or the Franciscans, might have hymns or antiphons for St Louis. (Do I remember aright that St Louis was a third order Franciscan?).

    Thanked by 1Earl_Grey
  • rarty
    Posts: 96
    St. Louis is the (co-) patron of the Franciscan Third Order (now OFS), but I don't see a proper office in any of the modern (post 1900) Franciscan graduals I have.

    In the Franciscan supplement for the Liturgy of the Hours there is a hymn for the Office of Readings, "King of kings".

    In an older Franciscan book, I did find a different hymn (below), which appears to be from the medieval French/Parisian office, which if not readily found in a book by someone else, is available as a recording at least.


    At Vespers:

    Te sancte rursus, Ludóvice, prǽlia
    Divína poscunt: tu, crucis clavum tenens,
    Speíque sacras ánchora fundans rates,
    Moves tyránnis bella, Christo mílitas.

    2. Vincis cadéndo: mors tibi victóriam
    Aufert et addit: corpus hic palmæ tegunt
    Nondum sepúltum, sed triúmpho nóbili
    Cælum parátur, et corónis sídera.

    3. Tuus patérnæ rédditus terræ cinis
    Regnum tuétur, dum, throno præsens Dei,
    Ætérna regnas pascis inter lília,
    Favénsque blando nostra cernis lúmine.

    4. Sit Trinitáti sempitérna glória,
    Honor, potéstas atque jubilátio,
    In unitáte, quæ gubérnans ómnia
    Per cuncta regnat sæculórum sǽcula.

    Translation from St. Andrew Daily Missal (Dom Lefebvre):

    God twice called you to battle, saint Louis,
    In his cause you took the cross as your guide,
    Hope was your anchor for your ship;
    Fighting for Christ, you waged war on tyrants.

    2. Triumphant in your death, death both stole the victory from you
    And made it yours; your body received honors
    Before burial; a nobler triumph
    Awaits you in heaven with your crown.

    3. Your body returned to your homeland
    Protects your kingdom and from God's throne
    Where you reign among the everlasting lilies,
    On your sons you cast a kindly grace.

    4. Everlasting glory be to the Trinity,
    Honor and power and endless praise,
    To Him who in unity governs supreme
    And reigns for ever, world without end.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen Earl_Grey
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 882
    Thanks. Louis isn't even mentioned in the 1974 Graduale. I mistakingly wrote 1972 above. I didn't bother checking the Triplex, thinking the two volumes were identical except for the added numes.
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 882
    Nevermind. I went back to the 1974 Graduale and S. Ludovici (Louis) is in both editions of the Graduale on the same page 595. I must have just missed it the first time. Thanks for the other hymn suggestions too

    I just checked Amazon and the album quoted above is a $77 import, but the MP3 can be downloaded for under $10.
    Thanked by 1BruceL