Hymn to the Sea

eagle-crewI found this written by Fr Claude Babarit (left of the group), my skipper at the Naviclerus regatta (priests and seminarians on eight 34-foot yachts) in August 2011. He is a retired priest at Les Sables d’Olonne in the Vendée and he does a lot of good taking young underprivileged people sailing.

I was second from the right with my buzz cut!

I give my translation below this beautiful text.

Au commencement était la parole dans le silence éternel des espaces infinis.
Laisse-là te rejoindre dans le silence de l’été.
Ecoute la mer. Elle te parle d’avenir, au-delà de ses colères.
Ecoute la terre. Elle te dit son histoire. C’est aussi la tienne.
Ecoute le ciel. La parole délivrée par les livres saints, depuis Moïse et les éclairs du Sinaï.
Mer, terre et ciel ne cessent de parler au cœur qui écoute.
Rien ne saurait les arrêter. C .B.

In the beginning was the word in the
eternal silence of infinite spaces.
Let it come to you in the silence of the summer.
Listen to the sea. It speaks to you of the future, beyond its anger.
Listen to the earth. It relates its history to you. It is also yours.
Listen to heaven. The word delivered by the Holy Books, from Moses and the lightning bolts of Sinai.
Sea, earth and heaven never cease to speak to the heart that listens.
Nothing will be able to stop it. C .B.

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2 Responses to Hymn to the Sea

  1. Stephen K says:

    How direct, how simple, how eloquent, how remindful, this is. “Open our ears, Lord, help us to hear Your Voice”. Thank you, Father.

  2. Stephen K says:

    The clear beauty of Pere Babarit’s meditation verse has prompted me to echo:

    Deep in the bosom of the earth;
    And in the cellars of the sea;
    There our God is present
    Sustaining thou and me
    And all things living;
    Yea, the great things and the small;
    Our God who is all-forgiving
    Who made and loves us all.

    O that today you would hear his voice!
    Harden not your hearts,
    As on that day at Meribah,
    In the desert’s arid parts
    Where Self reigns defiant,
    Usurping our great Lord.
    Open thou our ears, O Lord,
    That we may hear thy saving Word.

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