Hail Thee, Festival Day

Representative Text


Hail thee, festival day!
blest day to be hallowed forever;
day when our Lord was raised,
breaking the kingdom of death.

1 All the fair beauty of earth,
from the death of the winter arising!
Every good gift of the year
now with its Master returns; [Refrain]

2 Rise from the grave now, O Lord,
the author of life and creation.
Treading the pathway of death,
new life you give to us all: [Refrain]


Hail thee, festival day!
blest day to be hallowed forever;
day when our risen Lord
rose in the heavens to reign.

1 He who was nailed to the cross
is Ruler and Lord of all people.
All things created on earth
Sing to the glory of God: [Refrain]

2 Daily the loveliness grows,
adorned with glory of blossom;
heaven her gates unbars,
flinging her increase of light: [Refrain]


Hail thee, festival day!
blest day to be hallowed forever;
day when the Holy Ghost
shone in the world full of grace.

1 Bright and in likeness of fire,
on those who await your appearing,
you whom the Lord had foretold
suddenly, swiftly descend: [Refrain]

2 Forth from the Father you come
with sevenfold mystical offering,
pouring on all human souls
infinite riches of God: [Refrain]

All Occasions:

3 God the Almighty,the Lord,
the Ruler of earth and the heavens,
guard us from harm without;
cleanse us from evil within: [Refrain]

4 Jesus the health of the world,
enlighten our minds, great Redeemer,
Son of the Father supreme,
only begotten of God: [Refrain]

5 Spirit of life and of power,
now flow in us, fount of our being,
light that enlightens us all,
life that in all may abide: [Refrain]

6 Praise to the giver of good!
O lover and author of concord,
pour out your balm on our days;
order our ways in your peace: [Refrain]

United Methodist Hymnal, 1989

Author: Venantius Honorius Clementianus Fortunatus

Venantius Honorius Clematianus Fortunatus (b. Cenada, near Treviso, Italy, c. 530; d. Poitiers, France, 609) was educated at Ravenna and Milan and was converted to the Christian faith at an early age. Legend has it that while a student at Ravenna he contracted a disease of the eye and became nearly blind. But he was miraculously healed after anointing his eyes with oil from a lamp burning before the altar of St. Martin of Tours. In gratitude Fortunatus made a pilgrimage to that saint's shrine in Tours and spent the rest of his life in Gaul (France), at first traveling and composing love songs. He developed a platonic affection for Queen Rhadegonda, joined her Abbey of St. Croix in Poitiers, and became its bishop in 599. His Hymns far all th… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Lo, the fair beauty of the earth (English Hymnal)
Title: Hail Thee, Festival Day
Latin Title: Salve festa dies
Author: Venantius Honorius Clementianus Fortunatus
Meter: Irregular with refrain
Source: Trans. The English Hymnal, 1906
Language: English
Refrain First Line: Hail thee, festival day
Liturgical Use: Songs of Response


SALVE FESTA DIES (Vaughan Williams)

Ralph Vaughan Williams (PHH 316) composed SALVE FESTA DIES as a setting for Venantius H. Fortunatus's (PHH 400) famous text "Hail Thee, Festival Day." The tune, whose title comes from the opening words of that text, was published in The English Hymnal of 1906. Like SINE NOMINE (505), this tune is vi…

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The New English Hymnal #109a

The New English Hymnal #109b

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The United Methodist Hymnal #324

The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement #313

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