O Antiphons

Over the last week of Advent there is a special prayers that are prayed/sung during Vespers, from December 17-23, each day is a different name of Jesus used in the Bible. This is an ancient tradition dating back to the sixth century. Please note that I am using the translation from the Church of England’s Book of Common Worship as it is much closer to the Latin and the one that the USCCB has online is horrible in comparison.

December 17: O Wisdom (Sapientia), coming forth from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from one end to the other, mightily and sweetly ordering all things: Come and teach us the way of prudence.

December 18: O Adonai, and leader of the House of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush and gave him the law on Sinai: Come and redeem us with an outstretched arm.

December 19: O Root of (Radix) Jesse, standing as a sign among the peoples; before you kings will shut their mouths, to you the nations will make their prayer: Come and deliver us, and delay no longer.

December 20: O Key of (Clavis) David and scepter of the House of Israel; you open and no one can shut; you shut and no one can open: Come and lead the prisoners from the prison house, those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

December 21: O Morning Star/Dayspring/Radiant Dawn (Oriens, rising Sun), splendor of light eternal and sun of righteousness: Come and enlighten those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

December 22: O King of the nations (Rex Gentium), and their desire, the cornerstone making both one: Come and save the human race, which you fashioned from clay.

December 23: O Emmanuel, our king and our lawgiver, the hope of the nations and their Savior: Come and save us, O Lord our God.

If you have the time and want to pray Vespers this upcoming week more power to you. I hope that we all can take the lessons from this season and remember them throughout the year.