Hymn #83: I Sing As I Arise Today

Saint Patrick (c. 372-466) is believed to be the writer of the words on which this hymn is based.  An eleventh-century manuscript says that the hymn, called a "Breastplate," was written to protect Patrick and his monks from their deadly enemies.

 

Saint Patrick of Ireland was born in Britain of Christian parent.  After being taken captive and made a slave in Ireland at age sixteen, he escaped and was ordained to the ministry. He then returned to Ireland as a missionary, converted the nation, and was consecrated bishop in 432 C.E.

William Patrick Rowan (b.1951) included the tune SEED OF LIFE in his 1993 collection Together Met, Together Bound, where it appeared with a text by Herbert O'Driscoll, "Before the World Had Yet Begun."  This is its first publication as a setting for the hymn of Saint Patrick.

 

William P. Rowan holds degrees from Southern Illinois University and the University of Michigan.  He has served as director of music ministries at St. Mary Cathedral in Lansing, Michigan, and written many hymns and anthems for use in the Roman Catholic Church and the wider ecumenical community.