Holiday Hymn (Mother of All that is Pure and Glad / Causa Nostrae Laetitae)

This is a children's hymn invoking Mary's presence during a holiday.  It is  sung in many church or convent schools in the last day of term, especially ones run by the Loretto sisters in India.

It was written by a Sister of Notre Dame, known only by her initials, SMX (ref)

Hymnals where it was published include:
  • New Hymns by the Sisters of Notre Dame, Cary and Co, London, circa 1892  (ref)
  • In Hymnis et Canticis, published by Paternoster House in London in 1903
  • The Ordinary of the Mass and Complete Manual of Hymns for Parochial Schools, Public Press, Philadelphia, USA, 1935
  • The Notre Dame Sisters School hymnal 1955 (and likely earlier editions - but not their Sunday School hymnal).

The last line of each verse, Causa Nostrae Laetitiae, translates as "Cause of our joy".


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School group with guitar accompaniment and keyboard:


Singer with electronic keyboard backing, with on-screen lyrics:

Small group with piano accompaniment, on-screen lyrics:

Singer, self-accompanied on keyboard:

Instrumental, piano with violin:


Mother of all that is pure and glad, all that is bright and blest,
As we have taken our toil to thee, so we will take our rest.
Take thou and bless our holiday, O causa nostrae laetitiae!

Airs that are soft, and a cloudless sky, we would owe all to thee
Speak to thy Son as thou did of old, that feast day in Galilee.
Tell him our needs in thine own sweet way, O causa nostrae laetitiae!

Be with us Mother, from morn till eve, thou and thy blessed Son;
Keep us from all that is grief to you, till the weeks and the months are run
Thine be we still, from day to day, O causa nostrae laetitiae!

Smile upon all that is dear to us, smile on our school and home,
Smile on the days we are passing now, smile on the years to come,
Brighten our work and gladden our play, O causa nostrae laetitiae.

Keep us in all that is blest of God, give us the joys that endure,
Lips that have smiles and words for all, hearts that are kind and pure;
so will thou be by night and day, O causa nostrae laetitiae!

Come when earth’s tears and smiles are o’er, mother of peace and love;
Show to us He who is joy to earth, and joy to the hosts above;
So shall we laugh in the latter day, O causa nostrae laetitiae!

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  1. Very nice song. Reminds me of the days in primary school. It was run by the Handmaids congregation.
    God bless you

  2. Beautiful! It reminds me of the last day of summer term, when we were going to be on holiday for at least six weeks. This would be the last hymn we would all sing at school assembly. I remember being full of joy singing this hymn. AND it was all in Latin! ❤️

  3. Sang that at end of primary 6 june 77 age 10/11.

  4. Trip down memory lane !!! Sang it at our school too....Sacred Heart ,Dalhousie

  5. Sang this in our beautiful chapel at Mary's Mount Ballarat, each term for 7yrs. Then had it played at my wedding there. Elizabeth Mildren

  6. Every word of this hymn is so so meaningful.

  7. Presentation Convent Matlock end of term happiness. 1954 to 1961 for me.