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St. Patrick's Breastplate

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Published on Mar 16, 2012

Saint Patrick's Breastplate is a Christian hymn whose original Old Irish lyrics were traditionally attributed to Saint Patrick.

The words were translated into English verse by Cecil Frances Alexander in 1889 and set to two traditional Irish tunes, "St. Patrick" and "Deirdre".The hymn, also known by its opening line "I bind unto myself today", is currently included in the English Hymnal, the Irish Church Hymnal and The Hymnal (1982) of the U.S. Episcopal Church. It is often sung during the celebration of the Feast of Saint Patrick on or near March 17, as well as on Trinity Sunday.

The pictures show the architectural history of St Patrick's (RC) Cathedral, Armagh which was begun under the primacy of Archbishop Crolly in 1839; changed in style under Archbishop Dixon; completed externally under Archbishop McGettigan; adorned internally in 1904 by Cardinal Logue; brutally re-ordered under Cardinal O'Faich in 1982 and re-interpreted and restored under Cardinal Brady in 2003.

I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.

I bind this day to me for ever,
by power of faith, Christ's Incarnation;
His baptism in the Jordan river;
His death on cross for my salvation;
His bursting from the spicèd tomb;
His riding up the heavenly way;
His coming at the day of doom:
I bind unto myself today.

I bind unto myself today
the power of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, his might to stay,
His ear to hearken, to my need;
the wisdom of my God to teach,
his hand to guide, his shield to ward;
the word of God to give me speech,
His heavenly host to be my guard.

Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ behind me,
Christ before me,
Christ beside me,
Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort
and restore me.

Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in quiet,
Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of
all that love me,
Christ in mouth of
friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.
Of whom all nature hath creation,
Eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
praise to the Lord of my salvation,
salvation is of Christ the Lord.

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