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Quotes

Purging the World of Evil

St. Thomas Aquinas on the Atoning Work of Christ

CCT Director / Editor of The Table / Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, Biola University
October 21, 2015

“Pelican of pietas, Jesus Lord, cleanse my unclean self in your blood; one small drop of it could make the whole world clean, purged from every evil.”

St. Thomas Aquinas
From “Adoro Devote,” translated by Eleonore Stump
in her Wandering in Darkness

I venerate you with devotion, hidden truth,

who lie beneath these forms, truly hidden.

My whole heart gives itself to you

because it is wholly undone contemplating you.

Sight, touch, taste are deceived in you;

hearing alone is safely believed.

I do believe whatever the Son of God has said;

nothing is more true than this Word of truth.

 

Only deity was hidden on the cross;

Humanity lies hidden here as well.

And I, believing and confessing both,

seek from you what the thief sought, repenting.

 

As Thomas, I do not see your wounds,

and yet I confess you as my God.

Make me increase steadily in faith in you.

in hope in you, in love of you.

 

O memorial of the death of the Lord,

bread providing true life to us.

provide life for my mind that I might always

know the sweet taste of you.

 

Pelican of pietas, Jesus Lord,

cleanse my unclean self in your blood;

One small drop of it could make

the whole world clean, purged from every evil.

 

Veiled Jesus, whom I now look upon,

when will what I so desire come to be?

When will I see your face, unveiled,

and in the vision of your glory blessed be?

 

St. Thomas Aquinas
“Adoro Devote,” translated by Eleonore Stump
in her Wandering in Darkness

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