CHRISTMAS DAY.
LAUDS.

The sacred Night is passing quickly on; and will soon bring us to the Second Mass, which is to sanctify the hour of day-break, or the Aurora. Every day in the year, the Church passes the hour before Sun-rise in prayer, for the rising of the Sun is a beautiful figure of the mystery of Jesus coming to this earth, to give it light. This portion of the Divine Office is called Lauds, on account of its being wholly made up of praise and joy. On Christmas Day, however, she somewhat anticipates the usual hour, in order that she may begin, at the precise time of the Aurora, a more perfect and more divine Sacrifice of Praise - the Eucharistic Oblation, which satisfies all the obligations we owe to the Divine bounty.

The Office of Lauds is celebrated with the same solemnity as that of Vespers; and altogether, the two Offices are much alike. Both of them tell us of the Divine Sun of Justice; Lauds celebrate his glorious rising, whilst Vespers - which are said at sunset, when the shades of evening are beginning to fall upon the earth - remind us, how we must long for that eternal Day which shall have no night, and whose Lamp is the Lamb [Apoc. xxi 23.] Lauds are the morning, Vespers the evening, incense. The mysteries of the liturgical day, begin with the first, and end with the second.


LAUDS.

V. Deus, in adjutorium meum intende.
R. Domine, ad adjuvandum me festina.
Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto: Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper, et in saecula saeculorum. Amen. Alleluia.
V. Incline unto my aid, O God.
R. O Lord, make haste to help me.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. Alleluia.

The first Psalm of Lauds shows us our Lord in his infinite power and majesty. His admirable Birth has renewed our earth. He is born in time; but he was before all time. The voice of the deep sea betokens marvellous power; the power of our Emmanuel is more wonderful far. Let us lead lives worthy of the holiness of his House, which he has come to throw open to us.

Ant. Quem vidistis pastores? Dicite: annuntiate nobis, in terris guis apparuit? - Natum vidimus, et choros Angelorum collaudantes Dominum, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. Whom have ye seen, O Shepherds? Say, tell us, who is it has appeared on the earth? - We have seen the Child that is born, and choirs of Angels praising the Lord, alleluia, alleluia.

PSALM 92.

Dominus regnavit, decorem indutus est: * indutus est Dominus fortitudinem et praecinxit se.
Etenim firmavit orbem terrae: * qui non commovebitur.
Parata sedes tua ex tunc: * a saeculo tu es.
Elevaverunt flumina, Do mine: * elevaverunt flumina vocem suam.
Elevaverunt flumina fluctus suos: * a vocibus aquarum multarum.
Mirabiles elationes maris: * mirabilis in altis Dominus.
Testimonia tua credibilia facta sunt nimis: * domum tuam decet sanctitudo, Domine, in longitudinem dierum.

The Lord hath reigned, he is clothed with beauty: the Lord is clothed with strength, and hath girded himself.
For, this day, by his birth, he hath established the world, which shall not be moved.
Thy throne, O Divine Infant! is prepared from old: thou art from everlasting.
The floods have lifted up, O Lord! the floods have lifted up their voice.
The floods have lifted up their waves, with the noise of many waters.
Wonderful are the surges of the sea: wonderful is the Lord on high.
Thy testimonies are become exceedingly credible: holiness becometh thy House, O Lord, which is thy Church, unto length of days.

Ant. Quem vidistis pastores? Dicite: annuntiate nobis, in terris guis apparuit? - Natum vidimus, et choros Angelorum collaudantes Dominum, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. Whom have ye seen, O Shepherds? Say, tell us, who is it has appeared on the earth? - We have seen the Child that is born, and choirs of Angels praising the Lord, alleluia, alleluia.

The second Psalm is an invitation to all nations, that they enter into Bethlehem, that House of our Lord which is now filled with his sweet presence. He is the sovereign Pastor, and we are the Sheep of his pasture. Though he be the Mighty God, yet is he most sweet and merciful; let us celebrate his coming with joy and gratitude.

Ant. Genuit puerpera regem, cui nomen aetemum, et gaudia matris habens cum virginitatis honore, nec primam similem visa est, nec habere sequentem, alleluia.

Ant. The Mother has given birth to the King, whose name is eternal: she has both a Mother's joy and a Virgin's privilege: not one has ever been, or shall ever be, like her, alleluia.

PSALM 99.

Jubilate Deo omnis terra: * servite Domino in laetitia.
Introite in conspectu ejus: * in exsultatione.
Scitote quoniam Dominus ipse est Deus: * ipse fecit nos, et non ipsi nos.
Populus ejus, et oves pascuae ejus, introite portas ejus in confessione: * atria ejus in hymnis, confitemini illi.
Laudate nomen ejus, quoniam suavis est Dominus; in aeternum misericordia ejus: * et usque in generationem et generationem Veritas ejus.

Sing joyfully to God, all the earth! serve ye the Lord with gladness.
Come in before his presence, with exceeding great joy.
Know ye, that this Infant, the Lord, is God: he made us, and not we ourselves.
We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture; go ye into his gates, with praise: into his courts, with hymns, and give glory to him.
Praise ye his name, for the Lord is sweet; his mercy endureth for ever: and his truth to generation and generation.

Ant. Genuit puerpera regem, cui nomen aetemum, et gaudia matris habens cum virginitatis honore, nec primam similem visa est, nec habere sequentem, alleluia.

Ant. The Mother has given birth to the King, whose name is eternal: she has both a Mother's joy and a Virgin's privilege: not one has ever been, or shall ever be, like her, alleluia.

The two following Psalms, which the Church unites into one, are the prayer of the faithful soul to her God, at dawn of day. From her first waking, she thirsts after the great God, her Creator and Redeemer. To-day we have this same God lying before us in his Crib; he comes that he may fill our souls, and nourish us, with his own substance:- how shall we do otherwise than rejoice in him? The orb of day will soon light up the east; but our Sun of Justice, the Lamb, is already shedding his bright soft rays upon us. May he mercifully pour out his light on all nations! May all the earth bless this divine Fruit, which the Virgin-Mother has yielded!

Ant. Angelus ad pastores ait: Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum: quia natus est vobis hodie Salvator mundi, alleluia

Ant. The Angel said unto the Shepherds: I bring you tidings of great joy; for, this day, is born unto you the Saviour of the world, alleluia.

PSALM 62.

Deus, Deus meus: * ad te de luce vigilo.
Sitivit in te anima mea: * quam multipliciter tibi caro mea.
In terra deserta, et invia, et inaquosa: * sic in sancto apparui tibi, ut viderem virtutem tuam, et gloriam tuam.
Quoniam melior est misericordia tua super vitas: * labia mea laudabunt te.
Sic benedicam te in vita mea: * et in nomine tuo levabo manus meas.
Sicut adipe et pinguedine repleatur anima mea: * et labiis exsultationis laudabit os meum.
Si memor fui tui super stratum meum, in matutinis meditabor in te: * quia fuisti adjutor meus.
Et in velamento alarum tuarum exsultabo, adhaesit anima mea post te: * me suscepit dextera tua.
Ipsi vero in vanum quaesierunt animam meam, introibunt in inferiora terrae:* tradentur in manus gladii, partes vulpium erunt.
Rex vero laetabitur in Deo, laudabuntur omnes qui jurant in eo: * quia obstructum est os loquentium ini qua.

O God, my God, to thee do I watch, at break of day.
For thee my soul hath thirsted, for thee my flesh, oh! how many ways.
In a desert land, and where there is no way, and no water: so, in the sanctuary of Bethlehem have I come before thee, to see thy power and thy glory.
For thy mercy is better than lives: thee my lips shall praise.
Thus will I bless thee all my life long: and in thy name, I will lift up my hands.
Let my soul be filled as with marrow and fatness, O Bread of Life! and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips.
If I have remembered thee upon my bed, I will meditate on thee in the morning: because thou hast been my helper.
And I will rejoice under the covert of thy wings; my soul hath stuck close to thee: thy right hand hath received me.
But they have sought my soul in vain; they snail go into the lower parts of the earth: they shall be delivered into the hands of the sword, they shall be the portions of foxes.
But the just man thus delivered shall, as a King, rejoice in God; all they shall be praised that swear by Him: because the mouth is stopped of them that speak wicked things.

PSALM 66.

Deus misereatur nostri, et benedicat nobis; * illuminet vultum suum super nos, et misereatur nostri.
Ut cognoscamus in terra viam tuam: * in omnibus gentibus Salutare tuum.
Confiteantur tibi populi Deus: * confiteantur tibi populi omnes.
Laetentur et exsultent gentes: * quoniam judicas populos in aequitate, et gentes in terra dirigis.
Confiteantur tibi populi Deus, confiteantur tibi populi omnes: * terra dedit fructum suum.
Benedicat nos Deus, Deus noster, benedicat nos Deus: * et metuant eum omnes fines terrae.

May God have mercy on us, and bless us; may the divine Infant, from his Crib, cause the light of his countenance to shine upon us, and may he have mercy on us.
That we may know thy way upon earth, O Emmanuel! thy salvation in all nations.
Let people confess to thee, O God! let all people give praise to thee.
Let the nations be glad and rejoice: for thou judgest the people with justice, and directest the nations upon earth.
Let the people, O God, confess to thee: let all the people give praise to thee: for to-day, the earth hath yielded her Fruit.
May God, our God, bless us, may God bless us: and all the ends of the earth fear him.

Ant. Angelus ad pastores ait: Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum: quia natus est vobis hodie Salvator mundi, alleluia

Ant. The Angel said unto the Shepherds: I bring you tidings of great joy; for, this day, is born unto you the Saviour of the world, alleluia.

The Canticle, in which the Three Children, in the fiery Furnace of Babylon, bid all creatures of God bless his name, is sung by the Church in the Lauds of every Feast. It gives a voice to all creatures, and invites the whole universe to bless its divine Author. How just it is, that, on this day, heaven and earth should unite in giving glory to the God, who comes down among his own creatures, and repairs the injury done to them all by sin.

Ant. Facta est cum Angelo multitudo coelestis exercitus laudantium Deum, et dicentium: Gloria in excelsis Deo, et in terra pax hominibus house voluntatis, alleluia.

Ant. With the Angel was a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest; and on earth, peace to men of good will, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF THE THREE CHILDREN.

(Dan. 3.)

Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino: * laudate et superexaltate eum in saecula.
Benedicite Angeli Domini Domino: * benedicite coeli Domino.
Benedicite aquae omnes, quae super coelos sunt, Domino: * benedicite omnes virtutes Domini Domino.
Benedicite sol et luna Domino: * benedicite stellae coeli Domino.
Benedicite omnis imber et ros Domino: * benedicite omnes spiritus Dei Domino.
Benedicite ignis et aestus Domino: * benedicite frigus et aestus Domino.
Benedicite rores et pruina Domino: * benedicite gelu et frigus Domino.
Benedicite glacies et nives Domino: * benedidte noctes et dies Domino.
Benedicite lux et tenebrae Domino: * benedicite fulgura et nubes Domino.
Benedicat terra Dominum: * laudet et superexaltet eum in saecula.
Benedicite montes et colles Domino: * benedicite universa germinantia in terra Domino.
Benedicite fontes Domino: * benedicite maria et flumina Domino.
Benedicite cete, et omnia quae moventur in aquis, Domino: * benedicite omnes volucres coeli Domino.
Benedicite omnes bestiae, et pecora Domino: * benedicite filii hominum Domino.
Benedicat Israel Dominum: * laudet et superexaltet eum in saecula.
Benedicite Sacerdotes Domini Domino: * benedicite servi Domini Domino.
Benedicite spiritus et animae Justorum Domino: * benedicite Sancti et humiles corde Domino.
Benedicite Anania, Azaria, Misael Domino: * laudate et superexaltate eum in saecula.
Benedicamus Patrem et Filium cum sancto Spiritu: * laudemus, et superexaltemus eum in saecula.
Benedictus es Domine, in firmamento coeli: * et laudabilis et gloriosus, et superexaltatus in saecula.

All ye works of the Lord, bless the Lord: praise and exalt him above all for ever.
O ye Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord: O ye heavens, bless the Lord.
O all ye waters, that are above the heavens, bless the Lord: O all ye powers of the Lord, bless the Lord.
O ye sun and moon, bless the Lord: O ye stars of heaven, bless the Lord.
O every shower and dew, bless ye the Lord: O all ye spirits of God, bless the Lord.
O ye fire and heat, bless the Lord: O ye cold and heat, bless the Lord.
O ye dews and hoar frosts, bless the Lord: O ye frost and cold, bless the Lord.
O ye ice and snow, bless the Lord: O ye nights and days, bless the Lord.
O ye light and darkness, bless the Lord: O ye lightnings and clouds, bless the Lord.
Oh! let the earth bless the Lord: let it praise and exalt him above all for ever.
O ye mountains and hills, bless the Lord: O all ye things that spring up in the earth, bless the Lord.
O ye fountains, bless the Lord: O ye seas and rivers, bless the Lord.
O ye whales, and all that move in the waters, bless the Lord: O all ye fowls of the air, bless the Lord.
O all ye beasts and cattle, bless the Lord: O ye sons of men, bless the Lord.
Oh! let Israel bless the Lord: let them praise and exalt him above all for ever.
O ye Priests of the Lord, bless the Lord: O ye servants of the Lord, bless the Lord.
O ye spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord: O ye holy and humble of heart, bless the Lord.
O Ananias, Azarias, Misael, bless ye the Lord: praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Let us bless the Father, and the Son, with the Holy Ghost; let us praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Blessed art thou, O Lord, in the firmament of heaven: and worthy of praise, and glorious, and exalted above all, for ever.

Ant. Facta est cum Angelo multitudo coelestis exercitus laudantium Deum, et dicentium: Gloria in excelsis Deo, et in terra pax hominibus house voluntatis, alleluia.

Ant. With the Angel was a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest; and on earth, peace to men of good will, alleluia.

The three last Psalms of Lauds, which the Church unites under the same Antiphon, are also the last of the Psaltery. They sing the praise of the Lord, and urge all creatures to bless his holy name. The first of the three has a great resemblance with the Canticle of the Three Children; the second invites the Saints to sing to Him, who has glorified them, and made them the instruments of his providence; the third calls on every thing that can breathe forth music, to come and honour our dearest Infant King with sweetest thrills of melody.

Ant. Parvulus filius hodie natus est nobis, et vocabitur Deus, Fortis, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. a Little Child is, this day, born unto us, and he shall be called God, the Mighty One, alleluia, alleluia.

PSALM 148.

Laudate Dominum de coelis: * laudato eum in excelsis.
Laudate eum omnes Angeli ejus: * laudato eum omnes virtutes ejus.
Laudate eum sol et luna: * laudato eum omnes stellae et lumen.
Laudate eum coeli coelo rum; * et aquae omnes quae super coelos sunt, laudent nomen Domini.
Quia ipse dixit et facta sunt: * ipse mandavit, et creata sunt.
Statuit ea in aeternum, et in saeculum saeculi: * praeceptum posuit, et non praeteribit.
Laudate Dominum de terra; * dracones et omnes abyssi.
Ignis, grando, nix, glades, spiritus procellarum: * quae faciunt verbum ejus.
Montes et omnes colles: * ligna fructifera, et omnes cedri.
Bestiae et universa pecora: * serpentes et volucres pennatae.
Reges terrae et omnes populi: * principes, et omnes judices terrae.
Juvenes, et virgines, senes cum junioribus, laudent nomen Domini: * quia exaltatum est nomen ejus solius.
Confessio ejus super coelum et terram: * et exaltavit cornu populi sui.
Hymnus omnibus Sanctis ejus: * filiis Israel, populo appropinquanti sibi.

Praise ye the Lord from the heavens: praise ye him in the high places.
Praise ye him, all his Angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.
Praise ye him, O sun and moon: praise ye him, all ye stars and light.
Praise him, ye heavens of heavens: and let all the waters that are above the heavens, praise the name of the Lord.
For he spoke, and they were made: he commanded, and they were created.
He hath established them for ever, and for ages of ages: he hath made a decree, and it shall not pass away.
Praise the Lord from the earth, ye dragons and all ye deeps.
Fire, hail, snow, ice, stormy winds, which fulfil his word.
Mountains and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars.
Beasts and all cattle: serpents and feathered fowls.
Kings of the earth, and all people; princes and all judges of the earth.
Young men and maidens; let the old with the younger praise. the name of the Lord: for his name alone is exalted.
His praise is above heaven and earth: and he hath, this Day, exalted the horn of his people.
A hymn to all his Saints: to the children of Israel, a people approaching to him.

PSALM 149.

Cantate Domino canticum novum: * laus ejus in Ecclesia Sanctorum.
Laetetur Israel in eo, qui fecit eum: * et filii Sion exsultent in rege suo.
Laudent nomen ejus in choro: * in tympano et psalterio psallant ei.
Quia beneplacitum est Domino in populo suo: * et exaltabit mansuetos in salutem.
Exsultabunt Sancti in gloria: * laetabuntur in cubilibus suis.
Exaltationes Dei in gutture eorum: * et gladii ancipites in manibus eorum.
Ad faciendam vindictam in nationibus: * increpationes in populis.
Ad alligandos reges eorum in compedibus: * et nobiles eorum in manicis ferreis.
Ut faciant in eis judicium conscriptum: * gloria haec omnibus Sanctis ejus.

Sing ye to the Lord a new canticle, let his praise be in the Church of the Saints.
Let the new Israel rejoice in him that made him. and let the children of Sion be joyful in their King.
Let them praise his name in choir: let them sing to him with the timbrel and the psaltery.
For the Lord is well pleased with his people: and the meek and humble, like the Babe of Bethlehem, he will exalt unto salvation.
The saints shall rejoice in glory: they shall be joyful in their beds.
The high praises of God shall be in their month: and two-edged swords in their hands.
To execute vengeance upon the nations: chastisements among the people;
To bind their kings with fetters: and their nobles with manacles of iron;
To execute upon them the judgment that is written: this glory is to all his Saints.

PSALM 150.

Laudate Dominum in Sanctis ejus: * laudate eum in firmamento virtutis ejus.
Laudate eum in virtutibus ejus: * laudate eum secundum multitudinem magnitudinis ejus.
Laudate eum in sono tubae: * laudate eum in psalterio et cithara.
Laudate eum in tympano et choro: * laudate eum in chordis et organo.
Laudate eum in cymbalis benesonantibus, laudate eum in cymbalis jubilationis: * omnis spiritus laudet Dominum.

Praise ye the Lord in his holy places: praise ye him in the firmament of his power.
Praise ye him for his mighty acts: praise ye him according to the multitude of his greatness.
Praise him with sound of trumpet: praise him with psaltery and harp.
Praise him with timbrel and choir: praise him with strings and organs.
Praise him on high sounding cymbals, praise him on cymbals of joy: let every spirit praise the Lord.

Ant. Parvulus filius hodie natus est nobis, et vocabitur Deus, Fortis, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. a Little Child is, this day, born unto us, and he shall be called God, the Mighty One, alleluia, alleluia.

The Capitulum is taken from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews; we shall have it repeated, and with several additional verses, in the Epistle of the Third Mass.

CAPITULUM.

(Heb. I.)

Multifariam, multisque modis olim Deus loquens patribus in Prophetis: novissime diebus istis locutus est nobis in Filio, quem constituit haeredem universorum, per quem fecit et saecula.
R. Deo gratias.

God, who at sundry times, and in divers manners, spoke, in times past, to the fathers by the Prophets; last of all,  in these days, hath spoken to  us by his Son, whom he hath appointed Heir of all things,  by whom also he made the world.
R. Thanks be to God.

Sedulius, a Christian Poet of the fourth century, is the author of the beautiful Hymn, which now follows:-

HYMN.*

A solis ortus cardine
Ad usque terrae limitem,
Christum canamus Principem.
Natum Maria Virgine.

Beatus auctor saeculi
Servile corpus induit:
Ut carne carnem liberans,
Ne perderet quos condidit.

Castae Parentis viscera
Coelestis intrat gratia:
Venter puellae bajulat
Secreta, quae non noverat.

Domus pudici pectoris
Templum repente fit Dei;
Intacta nesciens virum.
Concepit alvo Filium.

Enititur puerpera
Quem Gabriel praedixerat,
Quem ventre matris gestiens,
Baptista clausum senserat.

Foeno jacere pertulit:
Praesepe non abhorruit:
Et lacte modico pastus est.
Per quem nec ales esurit.

Gaudet chorus coelestium,
Et Angeli canunt Deo;
Palamque fit pastoribus
Pastor, creator omnium.

Jesu, tibi sit gloria,
Qui natus es de Virgine,
Cum Patre et almo Spiritu,
In sempiterna saecula.
Amen.

From where the sun rises, to the furthest west, let us all sing to Jesus our King, the Son of the Virgin Mary. 

The blessed Creator of the universe assumed the Body of a servant: that he might thus by Flesh deliver flesh, and save from perdition the creatures of his hands.

The heavenly grace enters into the womb of the Virgin- Mother: the young Maiden carries within her a Secret, which she knows not.

This chastest living Dwelling becomes, in that instant, God's own Temple: the purest of Virgins conceives the Son of God

She gives him birth: Him, whom Gabriel had foretold, and whom the Baptist, exulting in his mother's womb, perceived when yet unborn.

He suffered himself to be laid on the straw: he disdains not the Crib: and He who feeds the hungry birds, is fed himself on a few drops of milk!

The heavenly citizens keep glad choir, singing their angel-hymns to God: and the Shepherd, the Creator of the world, is looked at by shepherds.

Glory be to thee, O Jesus, that wast born of the Virgin! and to the Father, and to the Spirit of Love, for everlasting ages.
Amen.

 

V. Notum fecit Dominus, alleluia.
R. Salutare suum, alleluia.

V. The Lord hath made known, alleluia.
R. His salvation, alleluia.

* In the Monastic Breviary, it is as follows:

R. breve. Verbum caro factum est, * Alleluia, alleluia.
Verbum caro factum est, * Alleluia, alleluia.
V. Et habitavit in nobis. * Alleluia, alleluia.
Gloria Patri.
Verbum caro factum est, * Alleluia, alleluia.

A solis ortus cardine
Ad usque terrae limitem,
Christum canamus Principem,
Natum Maria Virgine.

Beatus Auctor saeculi
Servile corpus induit;
Ut Carne carnem liberans,
Ne perderet quos condidit.

Castae Parentis viscera
Coelestis intrat gratia:
Venter Puellae bajulat
Secreta, quae non noverat.

Domus pudici pectoris
Templum repente fit Dei:
Intacta nesciens virum,
Verbo concepit Filium.

Enixa est Puerpera
Quem Gabriel praedixerat,
Quem matris alvo gestiens,
Clausus Joannes senserat.

Foeno jacere pertulit,
Praesepe non abhorruit:
Parvoque lacte pastus est,
Per quem nec ales esurit.

Gaudet chorus coelestium,
Et Angeli canunt Deo:
Palamque fit pastoribus
Pastor, Creator omnium.

Gloria tibi Domine,
Qui natus es de Virgine,
Cum Patre et Sancto Spiritu,
In sempiterna saecula.
Amen.

The Canticle of Zachary is now sung: it is the Church's daily welcome of the rising Sun. It celebrates the coming of Jesus to his creatures, the fulfilment of the promises made by God, and the apparition of the Divine Orient in the midst of our darkness.

Ant. Gloria in excelsis Deo, et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. Glory be to God in the highest; and, on earth, peace to men of good will, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF ZACHARY.

(St Luke, 1.)

Benedictus Dominus Deus Israel: * quia visitavit, et fecit redemptionem plebis suae.
Et erexit cornu salutis nobis: * in domo David pueri sui.
Sicut locutus est per os Sanctorum: * quia a saeculo sunt Prophetarum ejus.
Salutem ex inimicis nostris: * et de manu omnium qui oderunt nos.
Ad faciendam misericordiam cum Patribus nostris: * et memorari testamenti sui sancti.
Jusjurandum quod juravit ad Abraham patrem nostrum: * daturum se nobis.
Ut sine timore de manu inimicorum nostrorum liberati: * serviamus illi.
In sanctitate et justitia coram ipso; * omnibus diebus nostris.
Et tu puer, Propheta Altissimi vocaberis: * praeibis enim ante faciem Domini parare vias ejus.
Ad dandam scientiam salutis plebi ejus: * in remissionem peccatorum eorum.
Per viscera misericordiae Dei nostri: * in quibus visitavit nos, Oriens ex alto.
Illuminare his qui in tenebris et in umbra mortis sedent: * ad dirigendos pedes nostros in viam pacis.

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel: because he hath, this day, visited and wrought the redemption of his people.
And hath raised up an horn of salvation to us, in the house of David his servant.
As he spoke by the mouth of his holy Prophets, who are from the beginning.
Salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us.
To perform mercy to our Fathers, and to remember his holy testament.
The oath which he swore to Abraham, our Father; that he would grant to us.
That being delivered from the hand of our enemies, we may serve him, without fear.
In holiness and justice before him, all our days.
And thou, child, the Precursor of our Emmanuel, shalt be called the Prophet of the Most High: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways.
To give to his people the knowledge of the Salvation brought them by the Messias, unto the remission of their sins.
Through the bowels of the mercy of our God, in which the Orient, from on high, hath visited us.
To enlighten them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death; to direct our feet into the way of peace.

Ant. Gloria in excelsis Deo, et in terra pax homi nibus bonae voluntatis, alleluia, alleluia.

Ant. Glory be to God in the highest; and, on earth, peace to men of good will, alleluia, alleluia.

COLLECT.

Concede, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus, ut nos Unigeniti tui nova per carnem Nativitas liberet, quos sub peccati jugo vetusta servitus tenet. Per eumdem.

Grant, we beseech thee, O Almighty God, that we who groan under the old captivity of sin, may be freed therefrom by the new Birth of thine Only Begotten Son. Through the same, &c.

 

[Note - following the breviary reforms of Pope St. Pius X, Psalms 66, 149 and 150 were omitted from this office. DF]