Saint Meinrad Seminary & School of Theology

Formation and Education for the Life of the Church

O Advent, we await your antiphons



Read the full transcript of this preview

Gregorian chant has a long and rich history. This "preview" podcast episode, from our upcoming Season Two of Echoes from the Bell Tower, uncovers some of the chant tradition.

Some of the most beautiful chant music is heard at this time of year - Advent. In the Christian faith, Advent is the four weeks of waiting and preparing for the celebration of Christmas. The chant sung during this season reflects those feelings of longing and hoping.

Podcast hosts Br. Joel Blaize, OSB, and Br. Kolbe Wolniakowski, OSB, ask the chant experts at Saint Meinrad - namely, Fr. Columba Kelly, Fr. Harry Hagan and Fr. Jeremy King - to talk about the chant tradition and how chant is used during Advent.

One distinctive aspect of Advent is that the "O Antiphons" are sung at Vespers during each of the seven days before Christmas Eve. Each antiphon begins with "O," followed by a title of Christ, such as "O Wisdom" or "O Root of Jesse."

Br. Kolbe explains that the first letters of those titles (in Latin), beginning with the last title, form an acrostic, Ero Cras, which translates to "I will be tomorrow."


Here are some podcast extras to enjoy:

You can find the O Antiphons sung by Saint Meinrad monks at this playlist on YouTube:  


You can listen to more Advent and Christmas music performed by the Gregorian Chant Schola at Saint Meinrad, at this playlist on YouTube:


To download the sheet music for the O Antiphons, click the link below. Then choose the "Other" tab and scroll down to #7.

O Antiphon Sheet Music


You can listen to the Saint Meinrad chant selections heard on this podcast, and more, on Spotify, or you can download them from iTunes.

Remember, you can subscribe to "Echoes" on iTunes, Stitcher or SoundCloud. And let us know what you think by your rating or review. Thanks for listening!

Do you have a reflection on Christian faith or spirituality you would like to share? Click here to learn how to become a contributor to Echoes from the Bell Tower.

Echoes from the Bell Tower is a blog devoted to observations on Christian faith, spirituality and everyday events, by authors with a connection to the Benedictine values found at Saint Meinrad Archabbey and its Seminary and School of Theology. Contributors include students, permanent deacons, Benedictine oblates and Saint Meinrad monks. Their stories, thoughts and ideas highlight the mission and vision that ring out from the bell towers on this Hill in southern Indiana.