O Oriens (Dec 21)

The O Antiphon for Dec 21 sung by the Cantarte Regensburg.

O Oriens, splendor lucis æternæ, et sol justitiæ: veni, et illumina sedentes in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

O Dawn of the East, Brightness of the Light Eternal and Sun of Justice, come and enlighten them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

A meditation on the antiphon by Fr. Roger Landry

O Oriens: “O Radiant Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice: come, shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.” Isaiah had prophesied, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shown.” (9:1).

This title is variously translated “morning star”, “Dayspring”, “rising sun”, “radiant dawn”, “orient”. All beautifully express the idea of light shattering the darkness of night, of sin and Continue reading

O Clavis David (Dec 20)

O Clavis David, et sceptrum domus Israel; qui aperis, et nemo claudit; claudis, et nemo aperit: veni, et educ vinctum de domo carceris, sedentem in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

O Key of David and Sceptre of the house of Israel, Who dost open and no man doth shut, Who dost shut and no man doth open, come and bring forth from his prisonhouse the captive that sitteth in darkness and in the shadow of death.

A meditation on the antiphon by Fr. Roger Landry

O Clavis David: “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 Continue reading

O Radix Jesse (Dec 19)

The O Antiphon for Dec 19 sung by the Cantarte Regensburg.

O Radix Jesse, qui stas in signum populorum, super quem continebunt reges os suum, quem Gentes deprecabuntur: veni ad liberandum nos, jam noli tardare.

O Root of Jesse, Who dost stand for an ensign of the people, before Whom kings shall keep silence, and unto Whom the Gentiles shall make their supplication: come to deliver us, and tarry not.

A meditation on the antiphon by Fr. Roger Landry

O Radix Jesse: “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.” Isaiah had prophesied, “But a shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom.” (11:1), and On that day, the root of Jesse, set up as a signal for the nations, the Gentiles shall seek out, for his dwelling shall be glorious.” (11:10). Remember also that Jesse was the father of King David, and Micah had prophesied that the Messiah would be of the house and lineage of David and be born in David’s city, Bethlehem (Micah 5:1).

Isaiah prophesied a restoration of David’s throne — a new branch budding out of the old root. Christ is the root of Jesse in a two-fold sense: he is the descendant of David, who was the youngest son of Jesse, and he inherited the royal throne. The angel foretold to Mary, “The Lord God will give him the throne of David his father. He will rule over the house of Jacob forever and his reign will be without end” (Luke 1:32-33). Our hearts more and more urgently cry out for God’s reign to extend over all humanity: “Come, save us, and do not delay”.

Isaiah 52:13, 15; 53:2: “See, my servant shall prosper…So shall he startle many nations, because of him kings shall stand speechless. …He grew up like a sapling before him, like a shoot”.

Isaiah 11:10 On that day the root of Jesse shall stand as a signal to the peoples; the nations shall inquire of him, and his dwelling shall be glorious.

Rom. 15:12 and again Isaiah says, “The root of Jesse shall come, the one who rises to rule the Gentiles; in him the Gentiles shall hope.”

Rev. 5:5 Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep. See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.”

The above meditation was originally posted here.

Post originally published Dec 19, 2013

O Adonai (Dec 18)

The O Antiphon for Dec 18 sung by the Cantarte Regensburg.

O Adonai, et Dux domus Israel, qui Moysi in igne flammae rubi apparuisti, et ei in Sina legem dedisti: veni ad redimendum nos in brachio extento.

O Adonai, and Leader of the house of Israel, Who didst appear to Moses in the flame of the burning bush, and didst give unto him the Law on Sinai: come and with an outstretched arm redeem us.

A meditation on the antiphon by Fr. Roger Landry:

O Adonai: “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.” Isaiah had prophesied, “But He shall judge the poor with justice, and decide Continue reading

O Sapientia (Dec 17)

The beautiful rhythm of the liturgical year beats on, and we find ourselves in the last days before the great feast of the Nativity.  We know the Infant King’s birth is approaching because today begins the first of the O Antiphons at Evening Prayer.  For new readers who may not be familiar with the Great O Antiphons, we’re re-posting the Gregorian Chant videos which we shared with you in previous years.  You can also read more about the Os here.

Each antiphon ties in with our salvation history and is packed with meaning about The One around Whom that history revolves.  Each day we’ll include a short meditation on the antiphon by Fr. Roger Landry of Catholic Answers.  They are a nice way to bring the antiphons into your daily prayers this last week of Advent.

The O Antiphon for December 17th sung by the Cantarte Regensburg.

O Sapientia, quae ex ore Altissimi prodiisti, attingens a fine usque ad finem, fortiter suaviterque disponens omnia: veni ad docendum nos viam prudentiae.

O Wisdom, Who didst come out of the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly: come and teach us the way of prudence.

O Sapientia: “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.” Isaiah had prophesied, “The spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him: a spirit of wisdom and of understanding, a spirit of counsel and of strength, a spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord, and his delight shall be the fear of the Lord.” (11:2-3), and “Wonderful is His counsel and great is His wisdom.” (28:29).

Wisdom is here personified, present with God at the beginning of creation. This is a prefigurement of Jesus, the eternal Word of God, the “logos” John described in the opening of his gospel. Wisdom is the foundation of fear of the Lord, of holiness, or right living: it is wisdom whom we bid to come and teach us prudence. The cry “Come” will be repeated again and again, insistent and hope-filled.

Prov. 1:20 Wisdom cries out in the street; in the squares she raises her voice.

1 Cor. 1:30 He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption,

Sirach 24:3: “From the mouth of the Most High I came forth, and like mist covered the earth”.

Wisdom 8:1: “She reaches from end to end mightily and governs all things well”.

The above meditation was originally found here.

Need We Say More – Third Sunday of Advent


On this third Sunday of Advent, we continue our Need We Say More series, bringing you the second reading from today’s Office of Readings:  an excerpt from a fourth century sermon given by St. Augustine of Hippo.  He probably holds the title of most frequent contributor to the Office, as it seems we are always reading something from his sermons or his Biblical commentary.

Please click on the image below to listen to a short reading from a sermon by St. Augustine, courtesy of Sr. Grace Marie.


Need We Say More – Second Sunday of Advent


Continuing our Need We Say More series of posts for Advent, we bring you the second reading from today’s Office of Readings:  an excerpt from one of the exegetical works of Eusebius of Caesarea.  He served as Bishop of Caesarea, and died in the fourth century.  He wrote many and various works, including the first surviving history of the Church, which has earned him the title “Father of Church History.”

Please click on the image below to listen to a short reading from the Commentary on Isaiah by Eusebius of Caesarea, courtesy of Sr. Grace Marie.