12.17
TCC Playlist: Advent Hymns “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” by Sufjan Stevens

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Advent credo

”The “O Antiphons,” traditionally sung during the last week before Christmas (December 17-23) are more than a thousand years old. We know them best from the traditional Advent hymn, “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.” They are called the “O Antiphons” simply because each begins with the word, “O.” Originally used in monastic vespers during the last seven days before Christmas, gradually they came into use in the whole church.

Each antiphon names an attribute of the coming Christ. In Latin, they are

December 17: O Sapientia (O Wisdom)

December 18: O Adonai (O Lord)

December 19: O Radix Jesse (O Root of Jesse)

December 20: O Clavis David (O Key of David)           

December 21: O Oriens (O Dayspring)

December 22: O Rex Gentium (O King of the nations)

December 23: O Emmanuel (O With Us is God)

If you take the first letter of each name of Christ, starting with last, “Emmanuel,” and go to the first, you have “ero cras,” a Latin phrase meaning, “I come tomorrow.”

Start singing this hymn tonight and keep singing it through December 23. Here are the lyrics. We bet you know the tune.

O come, O come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny
From depths of Hell Thy people save
And give them victory o’er the grave

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
O come, Thou Day-Spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
O come, O come, Thou Lord of might,
Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai’s height,
In ancient times did’st give the Law,
In cloud, and majesty and awe.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.