Saturday, December 18, 2010

Beginning December 17: The O Antiphons

“O Wisdom, O holy Word of God, you govern all creation with your strong yet tender care.
Come and show your people the way to salvation.”

Each day the Brothers gather together in the Community Chapel to sing the Liturgy of the Hours. Yesterday we began the special "O Antiphons" which begin and close the Magnificat. The antiphon is usually a verse which relates to the season or feast being celebrated. Among the most beautiful antiphons of all are those for the seven days (December 17 - December 23) leading up to Christmas Eve, each antiphon beginning with "O."

The importance of “O Antiphons” is twofold: Each one highlights a title for the Messiah:
O Sapientia (O Wisdom),
O Adonai (O Lord),
O Radix Jesse (O Root of Jesse),
O Clavis David (O Key of David),
O Oriens (O Rising Sun),
O Rex Gentium (O King of the Nations),
and O Emmanuel.
Also, each one refers to the prophecy of Isaiah of the coming of the Messiah...