Today marks the transition of which we spoke yesterday to ‘Late Advent,’ the immediate preparations for the Birth of Christ at Christmas.
To mark the shift, the antiphon for the Caticle of Mary moves to the so called ‘O Antiphons,’ so called because they all begin with ‘O’ and a title from the Old Testament for the coming of the Messiah. Today’s iteration:
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.
In college, we would chant these to the ancient chant tones, which were haunting in the beauty. As they date to at least the Fifth Century, these are some of the oldest tones still in use, and I wish I still had that little sheet describing the tones. Alas, too many moves.
In today’s Antiphon, we harken back to the very dawn of Creation to see the Word of God spoken and all things were made. But yet the power of creation is always tempered by the Love of God, which draws us deeper into His very mystery. Our path to salvation is about to open anew!