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Category: Charles Coffin (1676 – 1749)
Charles Coffin (1676 – 1749) was a French hymn-writer, born in Buzancy, Ardennes, France. From an early age he showed signs of great abilities and promise and gained a place at Plessis College in Paris.
In 1701 he gained an appointment at the College of Beauvais at the University of Paris succeeding where he became Rector in 1718, a post which he held until his death.
In 1727 he published some of his Latin poems which many appeared in the Hymnal: Paris Breviary in 1736. In English language hymnals there are a large number of his hymns translated by John Chandler, Isaac Williams, and others.
He died in Paris in 1749 but due to his controversial appeals against the 1713 papal Constitution Unigenitus, was refused the last rites and a Christian burial by the parish rector of Saint-Etienne-du-Mont.
Happy are they, they that love God,
whose hearts have Christ confessed,
who by his cross have found their life,
and ‘neath his yoke their rest.
Glad is the praise, sweet are the songs,
when they together sing;
and strong the prayers that bow the ear
of heaven’s eternal King.
Christ to their homes giveth his peace,
and makes their loves his own:
but ah, what tares the evil one
hath in his garden sown.
Sad were our lot, evil this earth,
did not its sorrows prove
the path whereby the sheep may find
the fold of Jesus’ love.
Then shall they know, they that love him,
how all their pain is good;
and death itself cannot unbind
their happy brotherhood.
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