Saturday, September 12, 2009

Sunday Taster II: Tenebrae

The Lamentations of Jeremiah, chanted in Latin with an accompanying slide show, by the Young Dominicans of Oxford. It is chanted in the service of Tenebrae (or "shadows") on the day after Good Friday.

One of the things which attracts Dr. Swift to his own, rather pessimistic and acerbic form of Christianity is that the Faith tells the truth about the way people really are--and part of the truth is this, however uncomfortable. Indeed and indeed, we are "very far gone."

The text is here in English.

Remember, O LORD, what is come upon us: consider, and behold our reproach.
Our inheritance is turned to strangers, our houses to aliens.
We are orphans and fatherless, our mothers are as widows.
We have drunken our water for money; our wood is sold unto us.
Our necks are under persecution: we labour, and have no rest

We gat our bread with the peril of our lives because of the sword of the wilderness.
Our skin was black like an oven because of the terrible famine.
They ravished the women in Zion, and the maids in the cities of Judah.
Princes are hanged up by their hand: the faces of elders were not honoured.
They took the young men to grind, and the children fell under the wood.
The elders have ceased from the gate, the young men from their musick.
The joy of our heart is ceased; our dance is turned into mourning.
The crown is fallen from our head: woe unto us, that we have sinned!
For this our heart is faint; for these things our eyes are dim.

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