Oremus: Deus, qui nobis sub sacramento mirabili, passionis tuæ memoriam reliquisti: tribue, quæsumus, ita nos corporis et sanguinis tui sacra mysteria venerari, ut redemptionis tuæ fructum in nobis iugiter sentiamus. Qui vivis et regnas in sæcula sæculorum.
Hence so great a Sacrament
Let us venerate with heads bowed [cernui]
And let the old practise [documentum]
Give way to the new rite;
Let faith provide a supplement
For the failure of the senses.
To the Begetter and the Begotten [both masculine gender],
℣. You have provided them bread from heaven. ℟. Having in itself [in se] all delight [delectamentum].
Let us pray: O God, who to us in this wonderful Sacrament, bequeathed a memorial of Your Passion: grant, we beseech, that we, in worshipping [venerari; in addition to simple worship, may also mean worshipping in order to receive favour] the Holy Mysteries of Your Body and Blood, may within ourselves continually [iugiter], sensibly perceive [sentiamus] the fruit of Your redemption. You who live and reign into ages of ages.
A century-old translation and still used in Catholic churches liturgically renders the hymn thus, in a form which can be sung to the same music as the Latin:
Down in adoration falling,
Lo! the sacred Host we hail,
Lo! o'er ancient forms departing
Newer rites of grace prevail;
Faith for all defects supplying,
Where the feeble senses fail.
To the Everlasting Father,
And the Son Who reigns on high
With the Holy Ghost proceeding
Forth from Each eternally,
Be salvation, honour, blessing,
Might, and endless majesty.
℣. Thou hast given them bread from heaven. ℟. Having within it all sweetness.
Let us pray: O God, who in this wonderful Sacrament left us a memorial of Thy Passion: grant, we implore Thee, that we may so venerate the sacred mysteries of Thy Body and Blood, as always to be conscious of the fruit of Thy Redemption. Thou who livest and reignest forever and ever.
Other, more modern English translations, such as this one, exist and are also used in Catholic churches liturgically.
℣. You have given them bread from heaven [Alleluia]. ℟. The source of all happiness [Alleluia].
Let us pray: Lord God, by the Paschal Mystery of the Death and Resurrection of Your only Son, You accomplish the work of man’s redemption. Full of trust, we proclaim the Paschal Mystery in the sacramental signs of the Eucharist. Help us to see ever growing in us the fruits of Your saving work; through Christ Our Lord.
The words "procedenti ab utroque / compar sit laudatio"—literally, "May equal praise be to the One proceeding from both"—refer to the Holy Spirit, who according to the later version of the Nicene Creed used in Western Christianity proceeds from both the Father and the Son (see Filioque). Many Eastern Christians do not share this belief that the Spirit proceeds from both the Father and the Son.
The basic text has been set by numerous composers from the Renaissance (Palestrina), the Romantic period (Faure, Franz Schubert), and contemporary composers (David Conte). Schubert wrote three settings of this text: D. 460, D. 461, and D. 962.
^See the note on "cælis" versus "cælo," below, for a print source for the Latin text.
^The word "cælis", not "cælo", is used in Finnegan, Sean. The Book of Catholic Prayer. 2000: Loyola Press. p. 521. The book prints the entire text of the prayer. However, "cælo" (and "cœlo") are common varieties. The distinction here is that the forms ending in "is" are plurial ("skies"), and the forms ending in "um" are singular ("sky"). This is a distinction without a difference as "bread from the sky" or "bread from the skies" clearly means "bread from heaven." Moreover, in a common pronunciation of Church Latin, "æ" and "œ" are pronounced the same. See a pronunciation table here.
^"Salus." The verb associated with "salus" is "sit" in the following line. The meaning most appropriate for "salus" here is meaning I.B. in the Lewis & Short Latin dictionary at Perseus, "a wish for one's welfare (expressed by word of mouth or in writing), a greeting, salute, salutation." There is no word in modern English that captures the sense used here exactly, but it is similar to the archaic "hail" as in "Hail to the chief." The Lewis & Short Dictionary gives another example of the same usage of "salus" from the comedy writer Plautus: "Non ego sum salutis dignus?" Literally, "Am I not worthy of your good wishes?" or "Am I not worthy of your hail"?
^For other examples of Latin use of the word "virtus" by St. Thomas Aquinas, here translated "virtue", see the Latin of the Summa Theologica, e.g. . For a discussion of the translation of the triplet "salus, honor, virtus" as the "three good wishes" customarily given to rulers, see e.g. robdick's comments at .
^Source: p. 63-64, "Hymns and Poems, Original and Translated" by Edward Caswall, 1873.