This time of year brings out the awe and joy (O!) in the music of the Advent and Christmas Seasons – especially in the “O Antiphons“. The exclamation of “O” or “Oh” is an audible release of an emotion, itself unseen.
George Frideric Handel’s Messiah was first performed in Dublin, Ireland in 1742 as a charitable fund-raising event and is a favorite among Christmas-season musical pieces.
Advent starts a new liturgical cycle in the Church each year; and in the daily and Sunday Mass readings of Advent, we are greeted by the verse of one of the greatest ancient poets in the Book of Isaiah. The Prophet Isaiah’s poetry tells of the coming of a Messiah who will rescue the plighted from sufferings and establish a new kingdom to satisfy all wants.