Since Christmas is nearly here, your evening prayers can reflect that in a special way, starting tonight. From the beautiful and sacred tradition of the Church’s prayer in the Divine Office (during Vespers), we receive the O Antiphons at the end of Advent. These short prayers, each beginning with an address to God using a different title each day (“O Wisdom,” “O Root of Jesse,” etc.), call on the Lord to fulfill His promise of sending a Savior to His people. Praying them each evening is a wonderful way to anticipate with the Church the feast of the long-awaited coming of the Child on Christmas morning.
- Here is a beautiful guide for you to print out and use with your family. It’s from one of my favorite blogs, Family in Feast and Feria. This guide has the antiphons as well as verses from the beautiful chant O Come, O Come Emmanuel, and lots of sacred art as well to add to its devotional value. It even has ideas to help you incorporate these antiphons into each day through decorating with suggested symbols and foods on each day’s page.
- At Fish Eaters they have a guide to Scripture verses that go along with the antiphons, as well as an explanation of the acrostic that the different titles of Our Lord named within them make when put together–it’s cool!
Also, today is a good reminder: the beginning of the Golden Nights means that there are only 8 days of Advent left! We only have a little longer to get ready for Christmas–so I hope that praying the O Antiphons helps you prepare spiritually for the great feast that is coming, as you continue to prepare in all the other ways.