Gregorian Chant: The Eternal Song
By Sr. Fidelis
Splendor Paternae Gloriae
The Office of Lauds, traditionally sung at dawn, is filled throughout with references to both the light and the “Light.” We take for granted that we can have light today at the flip of a switch, while in earlier centuries, they were dependent upon the light of day, and were attuned to the sun’s rising and setting, and the spiritual significance of these natural events. The Monday hymn for Lauds is filled with symbolic imagery. It is a power-packed prayer text to begin a day.
O splendor of the Father’s glory, bringing forth light from light,
light of Light, and fountain of light, O Day, illuminating the day:
O true Sun, descend, sparkling with uninterrupted brightness;
O radiance of the Holy Spirit, pour in upon our senses.
Let us also call upon the Father with vows, the Father of perennial glory,
the Father of powerful grace, that he may remove the impure fault.
May he inspire steadfast acts; may he blunt the teeth of the envious;
may he direct favorably harsh situations; may he give grace to those who are bearing them.
May he govern and rule the mind in a chaste, faithful body;
let faith burn with zeal, may it not know the poisons of deceit.
Let Christ be food to us, let faith be our drink;
joyful, let us drink the sober intoxication of the Spirit.
May this day pass joyfully: let modesty be as the dawn,
faith as the noonday; let the spirit not know dusk.
Dawn carries on its course; let the dawn go forward to every thing;
all the Son is in the Father, and all the Father is in the Word. Amen
Ambrose of Milan