The Te Deum (also known as Ambrosian Hymn) is an early Christian hymn of praise, joy, and thanksgiving. The title is taken from its opening Latin words, Te Deum laudamus, rendered as “Thee, O God, we praise”. It is customary for Catholics to pray the Te Deum on New Year’s Eve in thanksgiving and gratitude to God for the past year. The following is a popular 19th century English translation of the hymn by Fr. Clarence Augustus Walworth.
HOLY God, we praise Thy Name
Lord of all we bow before Thee;
all on earth Thy scepter claim,
all in heaven above adore Thee;
Infinite Thy vast domain,
everlasting is Thy reign.
HARK, the loud celestial hymn
angel choirs above are raising;
Cherubim and Seraphim
in unceasing chorus praising,
fill the heavens with sweet accord;
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord!
LO, the Apostolic train
Join, Thy sacred name to hallow:
prophets swell the loud refrain,
and the white-robed Martyrs follow;
and, from morn till set of sun,
through the Church the song goes on.
HOLY Father, Holy Son,
Holy Spirit, Three we name Thee,
While in essence only One,
undivided God we claim Thee:
and, adoring, bend the knee
while we own the mystery.
THOU art King of glory, Christ:
Son of God, yet born of Mary;
for us sinners sacrificed,
and to death a tributary:
first to break the bars of death,
Thou has opened heaven to faith.
FROM Thy high celestial home,
Judge of all, again returning,
we believe that Thou shalt come
in the dreaded Doomsday morning;
when Thy voice shall shake the earth,
and the startled dead come forth.
THEREFORE do we pray Thee, Lord:
help Thy servants whom, redeeming
by Thy Precious Blood out-poured,
Thou hast saved from Satan’s scheming.
Give to them eternal rest
in the glory of the Blest.
SPARE Thy people, Lord, we pray,
by a thousand snares surrounded:
keep us without sin today,
never let us be confounded.
Lo, I put my trust in Thee;
never, Lord, abandon me.