Sunday, December 11, 2016

Gaudete! Gaudete!

Here's a little traveling music for the third Sunday in Advent, also known as Gaudete ("rejoice!" in Latin) or "rose Sunday" after the preferred color for vestments (and the third Advent candle).

The carol itself seems to date from the 16th century, although it most likely is based upon a medieval hymn. It's actually a little more appropriate for the Christmas season, but if that's a concern please address it elsewhere.

The refrain, "Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus ex Maria virgine, gaudete!" translates, "Rejoice, rejoice! Christ is born of the Virgin Mary – rejoice!"

Advent originated in the early church as a penitential season leading up to Christmas --- less severe than Lent, but penitential none the less. Gaudete Sunday was a welcome break, a time to twist and shout a little.

Pope Francis is hardly a friend of mine, old right-winger that he is, but I liked what he had to say on Gaudete Sunday 2014 after labeling it a "Sunday of Joy." Instead of fretting about everything that remains to be done to prepare for Christmas, the faithful should focus this day on all good things life has given them, he said. Who could argue with that --- faithful or otherwise?

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