Now, let the angelic host of Heaven exult, exult the mysteries divine; and for the victory of so great a King sound the trumpet of salvation. Let earth rejoice, irradiated by such mighty beams, and, being lighted up with the splendor of the eternal King, let her feel the shadows gone from all her sphere. Let Mother Church also rejoice, adorned with the effulgence of so great a light; and let this place ring with the voices of many. Wherefore, do ye here present, O most dear brethren, in the wondrous brightness of this holy light, join me, I pray, in invoking the mercy of almighty God, that He, Who, for no merits of mine own, hath deigned to number me among the levites, may shed upon me the brightness of His light and make me perfectly perform the praise of this candle. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ, His Son, Who with Him liveth and reigneth in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever. R.Amen.
P. The Lord be with you.
S. And with thy spirit.
P. Lift up your hearts.
S. We have lifted them up to the Lord.
P. Let us give thanks to the Lord.
S. It is meet and just.
It is truly meet and just, that with all the powers of heart and mind, uplifting, too, our voices, we sing the God invisible, the Father almighty, and His only-begotten Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ; Who hath paid for us unto the eternal Father the debt of Adam, and hath wiped out with His dear blood the reckoning of the ancient offense. For these are the paschal rites wherein the true Lamb is slain with Whose blood the door-posts of the faithful are consecrated. This the night on which Thou didst cause our fathers, the children of Israel, to cross dryshod the Red Sea, leading them out of the land of Egypt. For it profited us nothing to be born except that we might be redeemed. O wondrous condescension of Thy great kindness in our regard! O inestimable affection of charity: to redeem the slave, Thou didst give up the Son! O truly necessary sin of Adam, that is wiped out by the death of Christ!
O happy fault, that was worthy to have such and so great a redeemer! O truly blessed night, that alone was worthy to know the time and the hour when Christ rose again from the dead. This is the night of which it is written: And the night shall be enlightened like day; and the night is my enlightening in my pleasures. The sanctification of this night, therefore, driveth away evil deeds, cleanseth offences, restoring innocence to the fallen and gladness to the mournful. It driveth out hatred, it produceth concord and curbeth tyrannies.
In thanksgiving, then, for this night, O holy Father, receive the evening sacrifice of this incense, which most holy Church rendereth to Thee by the hands of her ministers, in this solemn oblation of wax, from the labors of the bees. And now we know the glories of this column which the flickering fire doth kindle in God’s honor. Which fire, though it be divided into parts, yet knoweth no diminution of its light. For it is nourished by the fluid wax which the mother bee hath produced for the material of this precious torch.
O truly blessed night that despoiled the Egyptians and enriched the Hebrews! Night in which heavenly are joined with earthly things, divine with human! We therefore pray Thee, O Lord, that this candle, consecrated to the honor of Thy name, may persevere without failing in breaking up the gloom of this night. And, being accepted for an odor of sweetness, may it be mingled with the heavenly luminaries. May the daystar of the morning come upon its flame: that daystar which knoweth no setting: He Who, returning from the grave, hath shed His serene light upon the human race. We therefore beseech Thee, O Lord, that, granting peace in these paschal joys to us Thy servants, and all Thy clergy, and Thy most devout people, together with our most blessed Pope and our bishop, Thou wouldst deign to direct us with Thy watchful protection, to govern and preserve us. Through the same Our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who with Thee liveth and reigneth in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. R. Amen.
From the Vigil of Easter, New Roman Missal (Fr. Lasance), Benziger Brothers 1956