Music for your Advent

St. Augustine delighted to repeat those beautiful words, cantare amantis est – to sing is the work of a lover. This is most true. Speech is sufficient for the expression of a man’s ordinary thoughts; but let a stronger or sweeter emotion take possession of his heart, and as if by instinct he will life up his voice; the monotone of habitual speech no longer satisfies him, and he will sing; with the Psalmist he will ask that his mouth may be filled with songs. Repleatur os meum laude, ut possim cantare. Song, then, especially sacred song, is above all a manifestation of love.” The Ideal of the Monastic Life, Dom Germain Morin, OSB

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While it is true that Christmas is still a long ways away (despite what the television commercials, radio ads and in-store music is telling us) Advent itself is only a few short weeks away, beginning on Sunday, December 2. To prepare for Advent this year I plan to place an order on November 19 for the Advent at Ephesus recording by the Benedictines of Mary. It won’t be released until then and since I plan to purchase the MP3 format of the recording from Amazon (I don’t see it on iTunes) I have to wait until then. Having listened to snippets from all seventeen tracks on Amazon I think I’ve found what I’ll listen to each night as I finish my reading for the night.

The first of its kind for the Advent season, this gorgeous recording captures in song the spirit of hope and expectation of Advent. This unique CD is recorded by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, a young, monastic order of Sisters located in rural Missouri, dedicated to prayer and chant. Advent at Ephesus includes an amazing variety of traditional Latin and English hymns, polyphony, Gregorian Chant, medieval harmonies and an original piece to prayerfully lead you through the sacred Advent season in preparation for Christmas. 17 Hymns include O Come, O Come Emmanuel, O Come Divine Messiah, Alma Redemptoris, Gabriel’s Message, Come Thou Redeemer, Maria Walks Amid the Thorn, Vox Clare, and more.

The Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles is a monastic community located in rural Missouri. Consecrated to the Queen of Apostles, their lives are dedicated to contemplative prayer especially for priests. They support themselves primarily by making priestly vestments. Professing obedience to the Churchs teaching, the community upholds a loving commitment to preserving the liturgical heritage of the Church in the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and traditional monastic Office. This is their first recording with de Montfort Music and Decca records.

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