Thursday, April 12, 2018

Ambrosian Chants for Eastertide

Here is a great recording of three Ambrosian chants for the Easter season, sung by the Gruppo di Canto Ambrosiano, many of whose members are also part of the choir of Milan cathedral, and conducted by Luigi Benedetti, former director of the cathedral choir. (h/t Nicola de’ Grandi.)

In the Ambrosian Mass, the Fraction is done immediately after the Canon, while the choir sings an antiphon called the Confractorium; the first of these chants is that antiphon for Low Sunday.

Resurgens Iesus Dominus noster, stans in medio discipulorum suorum, dixit: Pax vobis. Hallelujah. Gavisi sunt discipuli viso Domino. Hallelujah. - Our Lord Jesus Christ, rising and standing in the midst of His disciples, said: Peace to you, Hallelujah. The disciples rejoiced on seeing the Lord. Hallelujah.

The other two are the Transitoria, the equivalent of the Roman Communio, for the fifth Sunday after Easter, and Easter itself; the first of these is also used during the season per annum.

Diligamus nos invicem, quia caritas Deus est: et qui diligit fratrem suum, ex Deo natus est, et videt Deum, et in hoc caritas Dei perfecta est: et qui facit voluntatem Dei, manet in aeternum. Hallelujah. - Let us love one another, because God is love, and he that loveth his brother is born of God, and seeth God, and in this is the love of God made perfect; and he that doth the will of God, abideth forever. Hallelujah.

Venite, populi: sacrum immortale mysterium illibatum agendum cum timore, ac fide. Accedamus manibus mundis, paenitentiæ munus communicemus: quoniam Agnus Dei propter nos Patri sacrificium propositum est. Ipsum solum adoremus, ipsum glorificemus, cum Angelis clamantes: Hallelujah, hallelujah. - Come, ye peoples, the sacred, immortal mystery that is offered shall be done with fear and faith. Let us come forth with clean hands, let us share in the gift of repentance, for the Lamb of God has been set forth as a sacrifice to the Father for our sake. Let us worship Him alone, let us glorify Him, crying out with the Angels: Hallelujah, hallelujah.

This second text was widely diffused in the Gallican church; as late as the 18th century, it was sung at Lyon on major feasts after the Agnus Dei. Here is the version used in the Gallican Rite, with a slightly different text.

Venite, populi, ad sacrum et immortale mysterium, ad libamen agendum; cum timore et fide accedamus manibus mundis, penitentiae munus communicemus, quoniam Agnus Dei propter nos Patri sacrificium praepositum est. Ipsum solum adoremus, ipsum glorificemus, cum Angelis clamantes: alleluia! - Come, peoples, to the holy and immortal mystery, to perform the offering; let us approach with fear and faith, with clean hands - let us share in the grace of repentance, because the lamb of God has for our sakes been prepared as a sacrifice to the Father. Let us adore him alone, let us glorify him, crying out with the angels: alleluia!

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