Catholic Prayer: Hymn for St. Matthias Feast
These stanzas are taken from the Menaea of the Greeks. (The Menaea is the Eastern Breviary which is primarily ecclesiastical poetry: poetry not, strictly speaking, written in verse, but in measured prose. This is the staple of those three thousand pages—under whatever name the stanzas may be presented—forming Canons and Odes; as, Troparia, Idiomela, Stichera, Stichoi, Contakia, Cathismata, Theotokia, Triodia, Staurotheotokia, Catavasiae,—or whatever else. Nine-tenths of the Eastern Service-book is poetry. "Hymns of the Eastern Church" by J.M. Neale)
O blessed Mathias! spiritual Eden! thou didst flow, like a full river, from the divine fountain; thou didst water the earth with thy mystic rivulets, and make it fruitful. Do thou, therefore, beseech the Lord that he grant peace and much mercy to our souls.
O apostle Mathias! thou didst complete the sacred college, from which Judas had fallen; and by the power of the Holy Ghost, thou didst put to flight the darkness of idolatry by the admirable lightnings of thy wise words. Do thou now beseech the Lord that he grant peace and much mercy to our souls.
He that is the true Vine sent thee, a fruitful branch, bearing the grapes that give out the wine of salvation. When they drank it that before were slaves to ignorance, they turned from the drunkenness of error.
Being made, O glorious Mathias, the chariot of God's word, thou didst break for ever the wheels of error, and the chariots of iniquity. By the divine power, thou didst defeat the idolaters, and destroy the pillars and the temples; but thou didst build up to the Trinity other temples, which echoed with these words All ye people, praise Christ above all for ever!
O venerable Mathias! thou, like a spiritual firmament, didst proclaim the glory of the only-begotten Son of God. Let us with one glad voice celebrate the praise of this apostle, who was effulgent with the Holy Ghost; he was the fisher of them that had gone astray, the light that reflected the divine brightness, the teacher of the mysteries.
O blessed apostle! the Savior called thee his friend, because thou didst keep his commandments. Thou art heir to his kingdom, and thou art to sit with him, on a throne, at the last terrible day, O most wise Mathias, who didst complete the number of the apostolic college.
Guided by the sail of the cross, thou, O blessed one, didst pass over the troubled sea of life, and didst reach the haven of rest. Do thou now vouchsafe to join the glad choir of the apostles, and beseech the infinite Judge, that he would show himself a merciful Lord unto us.
Thy tongue was a bright lamp of glittering gold, burning with the flame of the Holy Ghost. Thou didst consume all strange doctrines, thou didst quench all fire that was profane, and to them that sat in the darkness of ignorance, thou, O wise Mathias, didst show a brilliant light.Prayer Source: Liturgical Year, The by Abbot Gueranger O.S.B., Marian House, 1983