Rorate Caeli

New Video on the Traditional Office of Tenebrae

Readers may be interested in this short video that explains the traditional Office of Tenebrae and why it is so powerful a way of entering into the Passion of the Lord. 

The video was produced by a group of students at Wyoming Catholic College, where we have been chanting Tenebrae for the past ten years.

In recent years polyphony has been added to the chant (the video includes excerpts from a setting of the Lamentations by Palestrina and two responsories by Victoria, all for equal voices); this year the mixed Choir is preparing to sing Allegri's Miserere as part of two Tenebrae services. 

The video interviews Fr. Robert Frederick, chaplain at the College, as well as myself as the Choir and Schola director. Among other things, I touch on how popular Tenebrae has become in the community, in spite of (or because of) the challenge it represents. 

While I don't say it expressly, the message is clear: the New Evangelization will reach young people better when it takes advantage of treasures like this, so beautiful, compelling, and serious. Whether or when exactly the powers that be will awaken to this rather obvious truth is hard to say, but there is no question that a revival is taking place, like shoots of grass pushing up through asphalt.