Perhaps one of the lesser-known Advent customs is the O Antiphons, seven responses – or antiphons – that are recited or sung to introduce the Magnificat at evening prayer from December 17 through 23. This Advent is a good time to bring these antiphons into our daily prayers.
O Wisdom, O holy Word of God, you govern all creation with your strong yet gentle care. Come and show your people the way to salvation.
O sacred Lord of ancient Israel, who showed yourself to Moses in the burning bush, who gave him the holy law on Sinai mountain: come, stretch out your mighty hand to set us free.
O Flower of Jesse’s stem, you have been raised up as a sign for all peoples; kings stand silent in your presence; the nations bow down in worship before you. Come, let nothing keep you from coming to our aid.
“And the angel said to Mary, Do not be afraid” (Lk 1: 30). May we never be afraid and go to Mary for our consolation and peace.
O Key of David, O Royal Power of Israel controlling at your will the gate of heaven: come, break down the prison walls of death for those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death; and lead your captive people into freedom.
O Radian Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice: come, shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.
O King of all the nations, the only joy of every human heart; O Keystone of the mighty arch of man, come and save the creature you fashioned from the dust.
O Emmanuel, king and lawgiver, desire of the nations, savior of all people, come and set us free, Lord our God.