Wednesday, September 05, 2007

revised “O Come, O Come”

As many of us are probably thinking ahead to Advent around this time, I thought I’d point out the work of an unnamed person here who has rewritten “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” to be more in keeping with how he reads V2’s Nostra ætate:

http://www.bc.edu/research/cjl/meta-elements/texts/cjrelations/resources/education/OCE_commentary.htm

I dunno. I’m not a theologian, but I have a hard time buying this one. The words are kinda trite besides. But, interesting that someone did this.

6 Comments:

At Wednesday, September 05, 2007 11:11:00 PM, Anonymous Klaus der Große said...

His reading of Nostra aetate is half-baked to begin with, since he presumes that there is no continuity between prior and current doctrine. It gets really problematic when he presumes that a Catholic reading of Scripture no longer involves seeing the New Testament as the fulfillment of the Old, and hovers perilously close to denying that Jesus is the Messiah; Nostra aetate does not repudiate either point.

He is also forgetting that the text, in its original form, can be read as a desire for the second coming of Christ, where Israel = the Church. Either that, or he missed the heavy identification of Israel as a type of the Church in the New Testament.

Weird.

 
At Thursday, September 06, 2007 10:27:00 AM, Blogger HilbertAstronaut said...

Klaus der Grosse said pretty much what I was planning to say when I saw your post: :-) The lyrics of Veni can be read in both a historical sense (Israel's salvation was incomplete before the coming of Christ) and a symbolic sense (Israel is a type of the Church Universal, longing for its redemption). Nostra aetate addresses the historical reading, not the symbolic one.

The original "O Antiphons" greatly emphasize the symbolic reading, at the expense of the historical one. They also emphasize the continuity between Judaism and Christianity. For translations, see e.g.,

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/religion/re0374.html

"O Sapientia" is representative:

"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."

I would argue that any theological troubles with Veni would disappear if people would just use the original texts instead of fiddling with them ;-P Besides, the original melodies are much better! Check out:

http://www.cyberhymnal.org/htm/o/c/ocomocom.htm

In particular, observe that the hymn Veni melody comes from a funeral processional, and take note of how most congregations sing it ;-P

 
At Thursday, September 06, 2007 10:34:00 AM, Blogger Cantor said...

OCOCE is one of those ones I’ve often wanted to do with a different tune, just to throw people for a loop. Just for giggles, try these:

OLD HUNDREDTH
O WALY WALY
LAMBILOTTE (repeat the last line)

 
At Friday, September 07, 2007 9:59:00 AM, Blogger HilbertAstronaut said...

Actually, OLD HUNDREDTH sounds pretty good; it has a good solemnly, staidly joyful feel that might be more suited for a modern understanding of Advent.

 
At Friday, September 07, 2007 10:09:00 AM, Anonymous Klaus der Große said...

Bah. Forget these side commentaries. The real question, of course, is "Can we do the OCOCE Polka?"

 
At Wednesday, September 12, 2007 9:02:00 PM, Anonymous Pes said...

On the whole, his revision makes a dull thud. E.g.,

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come again and with us ever dwell


No poetry in that, just pedagogy.

 

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