“O Ecclesia”

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One Response to “O Ecclesia”

  1. Fr Aidan Kimel says:

    O Ecclesia,
    your eyes are like sapphire:
    your ears the mount of Bethel,
    your nose
    like a mountain of myrrh and incense,
    and your mouth is like the sound
    of many waters.

    In a vision of true faith
    Ursula loved the son of God
    and rejected betrothed and world alike;
    she gazed at the sun
    and implored the most beautiful youth,
    saying:

    With a great desire
    I have desired to come to you
    and rest with you in the marriage of Heaven
    running to you by a new path
    as the clouds course in the purest air
    like sapphire.

    And after Ursula had said this
    rumour spread amongst the people.

    And they said:
    In the innocence of girlish ignorance
    she does not know what she is saying.

    And they began to play with her
    in a great music,
    until the burden of fire
    fell upon her.

    Whence they all knew,
    for scorn of the world
    is like the mount of Bethel.

    And they sensed also
    the sweetest odour of myrrh and incense,
    for scorn of the world
    rises over all things.

    Then the devil
    invaded those that were his own,
    they that in the bodies of these women
    had struck down the noblest qualities.

    And all the Elements
    heard the great cry,
    and before the throne of God
    they said:

    O! the red blood
    of the innocent lamb
    has streamed out
    in the moment of union.

    Let all the Heavens hear this,
    and let them praise the lamb of God
    with the celestial harmony,
    for the throat of the Ancient Serpent
    has been choked with these pearls
    made of the word of God.

    St Hildegard of Bingen

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