Sunday, April 11, 2010

Easter 2: Doubting Thomas

The Easter Season is seven weeks long, beginning with Easter Sunday.

The Great Vigil of Easter marks the end of Lent and Holy Week and ushers in the Easter Season.

In the historic lectionary, the Second Sunday of Easter relates the account of "Doubting Thomas." But why this day? Because the Scriptures tell us that this event happened on the Eighth Day, which would be the Sunday after the Resurrection.

The ancient hymn that retells the account of Doubting Thomas is O Filii et Filiae, or "O Sons and Daughters."

The Church is still exploding with joy on this Sunday, and this hymn features three Alleluias as a refrain.

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
O filii et filiae,
Rex caelestis, Rex gloriae
Morte surrexit hodie.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
O sons and daughters,
The King of Heaven, The King of Glory
is risen from the dead today.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Here is the metered translation found in most Lutheran hymnals. Poetic license has been taken with the translation of the first verse. See above for the literal translation. The three Alleluias are to be sung at the beginning and at the end of the hymn. Depending on the arrangement, they may be sung between each verse.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

O sons and daughters of the King,
Whom heavenly hosts in glory sing,
Today the grave has lost its sting!

That Easter morn, at break of day,
The faithful women went their way
To seek the tomb where Jesus lay.

An angel clad in white they see,
Who sit and speaks unto the three,
"Your Lord will go to Galilee."

That night the apostles met in fear;
Among them came their master dear
And said, "MY peace be with you here."

When Thomas first the tidings heard
That they had seen the risen Lord,
He doubted the disciples’ word.

"My pierced side, O Thomas, see,
And look upon my hands, my feet;
Not faithless but believing be."

No longer Thomas then denied;
He saw the feet, the hands, the side;
"You are my Lord and God!" he cried.

How blest are they who have not seen
And yet whose faith has constant been,
For they eternal life shall win.

On this most holy day of days
Be laud and jubilee and praise:
To God your hearts and voice raise.

Special thanks to St. Paul Lutheran Church, Hamil, Illinois, and the Chapel of St. Timothy the Learner, which is the LCMS campus ministry at Western Illinois University.