THE ‘O’ ANTIPHONS: O Emmanuel – 23rd December



The family, together, say the Great Antiphon, followed by The Magnificat, and repeat the Antiphon at the close of evening prayer, or Vespers.

O EMMANUEL, Rex et legifer noster, exspectatio Gentium, et Salvator earum: veni ad salvandum nos, Domine Deus noster.

O EMMANUEL, our King and Lawgiver, the desire of the nations and the saviour thereof, come to save us, O Lord our God.

My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God, my Saviour.For He hath regarded the humility of His handmaiden: For behold, from henceforth, all generations shall call me blessed. For He that is mighty hath done great things to me, and holy is His name.And His mercy is from generation unto generations upon them that fear Him. He hath shewed might in His arm. He hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their hearts. He hath cut down the mighty from their seat and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things and the rich He hath sent empty away.he hath received Israel, His servant, being mindful of His mercy. As He spoke to our father, Abraham, and his seed, forever.

Magnificat anima mea Dominum, et exultavit spiritus meus in Deo salvatore meo, quia respexit humilitatem ancillae suae.Ecce enim ex hocd beatam me dicent omnes generationes, quia fecit mihi magna, qui potens est, et sanctum Nomen eius, et misericordia eieus in progenies et progenies timentibus eum.fecit potentiam in brachio suo, disp[ersit superbos mente codi sui; deposuit potentes de sede et exaltavit humiles; ensurientes implevit bonis et divites dimusit inanes.Suscepit Israel purum suum, recordatus misericordiae, sicut locutus est ad patres nostros, Abraham et semini eius in saecula.

[Isaiah had prophesied, The Lord himself will give you this sign: the Virgin shall be with child, and bear a son, and shall name him Emmanuel.]

Image: Notre Dame des Fers, Orcival, France:

Notre Dame des Fers is renowned as the one who frees the oppressed from slavery (dating from ancient times). The church itself features the shackles of actual slaves who were freed (from the Vikings, and later slave traders). It was also the site of a pilgrimage after World War II by prisoners who had been interned at Auschwitz throughout the War – slaves and martyrs to the horrors of the Nazi oppression. The victims included the priest of the church, who died in Auschwitz, and who was represented in the pilgrimage by another priest who had been interned with him, and had befriended him in Auschwitz. The statue of Notre Dame des Fers, (of the irons), shows Our Lady, seated with Christ, portrayed not as a child, but as the King – she points to Him as Emmanuel – the King and Lawgiver.

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