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Faith of Our Fathers

Frederick W. Faber

Faith of our fathers, living still,
In spite of dungeon, fire and sword;
O how our hearts beat high with joy
Whenever we hear that glorious Word!

Faith of our fathers, holy faith!
We will be true to thee till death.

Faith of our fathers, we will strive
To win all nations unto Thee;
And through the truth that comes from God,
We all shall then be truly free.

Faith of our fathers, we will love
Both friend and foe in all our strife;
And preach Thee, too, as love knows how
By kindly words and virtuous life.1


To discover more hymns, visit our growing list of Powerful Poetry.


  1. Note: In fairness to Faber, it needs to be noted that the version of this hymn we usually sing could be said to be a version “sanitized” by Protestants for they objected to and extirpated the unscriptural third verse from the original. But Faber, after all, was a Catholic priest, seeking to provide (among other things) inspiring, worshipful hymns to his flock. In keeping with his understanding of faith, his third verse read as follows:

    Faith of our fathers, Mary’s prayers
    Shall win our country back to Thee;
    And through the truth that comes from God,
    England shall then indeed be free.

    The original basis of the hymn was to remember the martyrdom and faith of Catholics who were killed during the reign of King Henry VIII. Yet removing the third verse has managed to make this hymn more universal in scope, applicable for all Christians through all of Christian history.

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