in the Anglican Diocese of Liverpool

A Hymn to St Giles

(Lyrics byt Sylvia Lawrence, Music by Ray Battersby)


All hail to you St Giles
Pure vessel of God’s grace
You are now our Church’s Patron 
A light to the human race.

Rejecting praise and fame
You left your land of birth
To travel far and wide to find
God’s calling here on earth.

Your days spent in the woods
A deer your only friend
Sustained by prayer and faith in God
Until your journey’s end.

You sheltered sick and poor
And cared for halt and lame.
So gracious in your sacrifice
This day we praise your name.

All hail to you St Giles
Pure vessel of God’s grace
You are now our Church’s Patron 
A light to the human race.

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

Our Patron

St Giles, Aintree

The life of St. Giles, known in early writings as Aegidius, is derived from a mixture of legend

and history woven together around the deeds of a saint.

He is reputed to have been born in Athens, the son of Theodore and Pelagia, in about 640AD

When he was twenty-four his parents died, and Giles, stricken by the double loss, and

unconsoled by the pleasures of fashionable life, sold all that he had and gave to the poor

in order to follow Christ.

Travelling by land and sea via Provence and Marseille he arrived at a Nimes where he found

a hollow of a rock in a green glade by a stream, shaded by four gigantic oaks.

There he lived in peace and prayer, his only companion a gentle hind (his emblem), whose

milk he drank.

While out hunting, Flavius, the king of the VisiGoths, shot an arrow at the hind, missed it,

and hit Giles, who was at his devotions. Though wounded, Giles continued at his prayers and refused all compensation for the injury done to his body. T

Giles would accept no compensation for his injuries and would not abandon his life of solitude and prayer though he did consent to be the founder of the monastery near Nimes which flourished till the Saracen invasion, when it was burned down and subsequently restored.

With the words, ” Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace,” he died on September 1st, 720.

Today, St Giles is the patron saint of woodland, lepers, beggars, cripples, and of those struck by sudden misery, and driven into solitude as well as being the patron saint of over one hundred and fifty churches in the United Kingdom.


A hymn for St Giles has been  written by two members of our congregation as a tribute to our patron.  With words by Sylvia Lawrence and music by our organist, Ray Battersby, it was debuted at our Patronal Festival in 2014.​