Saturday, August 20, 2011

Gift of St. Bernard of Clairvaux

There were many Gregorian versions of this beautiful hymn, but I liked this one best. so here it is.  Thanks to the folks at Fisheaters, the words are below in both Latin and English.

Jesu, dúlcis memória,
Dans véra córdis gáudia:
Sed super mel et ómnia
Ejus dúlcis præséntia.

Nil cánitur suávius,
Nil audítur jucúndius,
Nil cogitátur dúlcius,
Quam Jésus Déi Fílius.

Jésu, spes pæniténtibus,
Quan píus es peténtibus!
Quan bónus te quæréntibus!
Sed quid inveniéntibus?

Nec língua válet dícere,
Nec líttera exprímere:
Expértus pótest crédere,
Quid sit Jésum dilígere.

Sis, Jésu, nóstrum gáudium,
Qui est futúrus praémium
Sit nóstra in te glória,
Per cúncta semper saécula.
   Jesus, the very thought of Thee
With sweetness fills the breast!
Yet sweeter far Thy face to see
And in Thy Presence rest.

No voice can sing, no heart can frame,
Nor can the memory find,
A sweeter sound than Jesus' Name,
The Savior of mankind.

O hope of every contrite heart!
O joy of all the meek!
To those who fall, how kind Thou art!
How good to those who seek!

But what to those who find? Ah! this
Nor tongue nor pen can show
The love of Jesus, what it is,
None but His loved ones know.

Jesus! our only hope be Thou,
As Thou our prize shalt be;
In Thee be all our glory now,
And through eternity. Amen.


  1. Thank you so much for this beautiful piece Joyce. Quite amazing.

  2. Oh Joyce, what a sweet memory. This is one of the first prayers I memorized after my "conversion" many years ago. I found it in my great aunt's tiny little First Communion prayerbook from the 1890's, which my mom had given to me. This teeny book with its ivory cover and gilded pages contains so many beautiful prayers -- in the smallest print I have ever seen! I need to take it out again..
    Thank you!

  3. Yes Richard, it is. I am happy to have stumbled upon it.

    Patricia, you are welcome!

    I don't know why we allowed the Oregon Press to hijack the Catholic Mass in the United States when we have music like this that lifts the soul to Our Lord rather than attempt to drag Him down to earth.


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