Monday, 17 December 2012

O Wisdom!

Today, we move into the second part of Advent, preparing more immediately for our celebration of Christmas. My Christmas decorations are going up today!

Every day during this part of Advent, we say one of the 'O Antiphons' at Evening Prayer. Based on scripture, these express our human longing for Christ. Perhaps you could use them in your own prayers as Christmas approaches:

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. (17 December)

O Sacred Lord of ancient Israel,
who showed yourself to Moses in the burning bush,
who gave him the holy law on Sinai mountain:
Come, stretch out your mighty hand to set us free. (18 December)

O Flower of Jesse’s stem,
you have been raised up as a sign for all peoples;
kings stand silent in your presence;
the nations bow down in worship before you.
Come, let nothing keep you from coming to our aid. (19 December)

O Key of David, O royal Power of Israel,
controlling at your will the gate of heaven:
Come, break down the prison walls of death
for those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death;
and lead your captive people into freedom. (20th December)

O Radiant Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:
Come, shine on those who dwell in darkness
and the shadow of death. (21st December)

O King of all the nations, the only joy of every human heart;
O Keystone of the mighty arch of man:
Come and save the creature you fashioned from the dust. (22nd December)

O Emmanuel, king and lawgiver,
desire of the nations, Savior of all people:
Come and set us free, Lord our God.   
  (23rd December)

The popular hymn, 'O Come, O Come, Emmanuel' is based on these antiphons.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this FrS - you can find more on the O Antiphons and a reflection on each on the run up to Christmas here