The Singing of the Paschal Proclamation
C. May the Lord be on thy heart and on thy lips, that thou mayest worthily and fittingly proclaim His Paschal praise.
Exsúltet: Let the angelic choirs of Heaven now rejoice; let the divine Mysteries rejoice; and let the trumpet of salvation sound forth the victory of so great a King. Let the earth also rejoice, made radiant by such splendor; and, enlightened with the brightness of the eternal King, let it know that the darkness of the whole world is scattered. Let our mother the Church also rejoice, adorned with the brightness of so great a light; and let this temple resound with the loud acclamations of the people.
Wherefore I beseech you, most beloved brethren, who are here present in the wondrous brightness of this holy light, to invoke wtih me the mercy of almighty God. That He who has vouchsafed to admit me among the Levites, without any merits of mine, would pour forth the brightness of His light upon me, and enable me to perfect the praise of this wax candle. Through our Lord Jesus Christ His Son, Who with Him and the Holy Ghost liveth and reigneth one God for ever and ever. R. Amen.
V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
V. Lift up thy hearts.
R. We have them lifted up to the Lord.
V. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God..
R. It is meet and just.
It is truly meet and right to proclaim with all our heart and all the affection of our mind, and with the ministry of our voices, the invisible God, the Father almighty, and His only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ, who repaid for us to His eternal Father the debt of Adam, and by the merciful shedding of His Blood, cancelled the debt incurred by original sin. For this is the Paschal Festival; in which that true Lamb is slain, with Whose Blood the doorposts of the faithful are consecrated.
This is the night in which Thou didst formerly cause our forefathers, the children of Israel, when brought out of Egypt, to pass through the Red Sea with dry foot. This, therefore, is the night which dissipated the darkness of sinners by the light of the pillar. This is the night which at this time throughout the world restores to grace and unites in sanctity those that believe in Christ, and are separated from the vices of the world and the darkness of sinners. This is the night in which, destroying the chains of death, Christ arose victorious from the grave. For it would have profited us nothing to have been born, unless redemption had also been bestowed upon us. O wondrous condescension of Thy mercy towards us! O inestimable affection of love: that Thou mightest redeem a slave, Thou didst deliver up Thy Son! O truly needful sin of Adam, which was blotted out by the death of Christ! O happy fault, that merited to possess such and so great a Redeemer! O truly blessed night, which alone deserved to know the time and hour when Christ rose again from hell! This is the night of which it is written: And the night shall be as clear as the day; and the night is my light in my delights. Therefore the hallowing of this night puts to flight all wickedness, cleanses sins, and restores innocence to the fallen, and gladness to the sorrowful. It drives forth hatreds, it prepares concord, and brings down haughtiness.
Wherefore, in this sacred night, receive, O holy Father, the evening sacrifice of this incense, which holy Church renders to Thee by the hands of Thy ministers in the solemn offering of this wax candle, made out the work of bees. Now also we know the praises of this pillar, which the shining fire enkindles to the honor of God. Which fire, although divided into parts, suffers no loss from its light being borrowed. For it is nourished by the melting wax, which the mother bee produced for the substance of this precious light. O truly blessed night, which plundered the Egyptians and enriched the Hebrews! A night in which heavenly things are united to those of earth, and things divine to those which are of man.
We beseech Thee, therefore, O Lord, that this wax candle hallowed in honor of Thy Name, may continue to burn to dissipate the darkness of this night. And being accepted as a sweet savor, may be united with the heavenly lights. Let the morning star find its flame alight. That star, I mean, which knows no setting. He Who returning from hell, serenely shone forth upon mankind. We beseech Thee therefore, O Lord, that Thou wouldst grant peaceful times during this Paschal Festival, and vouchsafe to rule, govern, and keep with Thy constant protection us Thy servants, and all the clergy, and the devout people, together with our most holy Father, Pope N., and our Bishop N.. Have regard, also, for those who reign over us, and, grant them Thine ineffable kindness and mercy, direct their thoughts in justice and peace, that from their earthy toil, they may come to their heavenly reward with all Thy people. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who with Thee liveth and reigneth in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God: World without end. R. Amen.