Wednesday, December 8, 2010

the magnificat

I've had this version of the Magnificat on my mind lately. The text is from Luke 1 when Mary visits Elizabeth, who is pregnant with John the Baptist, and sings this song.

The setting is from Marty Haugen's evening vespers, Holden Evening Prayer. I've always thought it was a beautiful setting, and I love to accompany services where it is sung. My church uses Holden for weekly Lenten services, and I look forward to it each year. Now, in this advent season of anticipation, and anticipating the arrival of my own baby, I hear it in a different way.

The text and a beautiful prayer:

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.

He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children for ever.

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