News Archive

Saturday 22 May 2021

Look down from heaven, Father dear


Watch Saturday's Mass, Novena, and Benediction here.

The picture shows Pietro da Cortona's glorious fresco in the apse of the Chiesa Nuova, that is Santa Maria in Vallicella, our church in Rome.

Here you can find the text of our Novena: SPN Novena

Today's hymn for the Novena is by Fr Ralph Kerr of the London Oratory. In fact it forms the final four stanzas of his versified Life of St Philip. Here are the words so that you can sing along at home:

Look down from heaven, Father dear,

From that bright mount above,

On us who in this vale of tears

So sorely need thy love:

Look from thy peaceful haven,

 Thy place of well-earned rest,

On us who in this storm-tossed sea

With perils are oppressed.


No longer can earth’s shadows,

 Its darkness dim thy sight,

But clearly into all things dost

Thou see in God’s own light:

Remember then thy vineyard here,

The work thy hand hath wrought,

Which thou didst plant with so much toil,

And so much anxious thought.


Into thy hands we place ourselves,

From thee we seek for aid,

Thine army rule, for see the hosts

Of hell ’gainst us arrayed:

Beneath thy kind protecting care

If thou wilt let us live,

To thee the rudder of our lives

With all our hearts we give.


So steer this little ship of thine,

And from thy place on high,

Lead us in safety ’mid the rocks

Which all around us lie:

And if our pilot thou wilt be,

If thou wilt be our guide,

We’ll safely come to port, and be

For ever by thy side.