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About Sunday’s Music – Feast of the Most Holy Trinity

Blessed be the Holy Trinity and the undivided Unity!  In His great mercy, Our Lord reveals Himself as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.  The Holy Trinity is praised throughout Christian Liturgy and music.

The HYMN OF THE DAY “Come, Holy Ghost, Creator Blest” (498) is from the ninth century by Rhabanus Maurus (776-856).  It has been used as the office hymn for the Office of Terce, the church’s prayer at 9am.  It is sung at the ordination of candidates into the Holy Ministry.

A Pentecost hymn, it is appointed for Trinity Sunday confessing the Spirit’s relationship to the Father and Son: “Teach us to know the Father, Son, and You, from both as Three in One.” The tune is a simplification of the ancient plainsong chant (499) for the Latin text.

The PRELUDE (BWV 667), based on the Hymn of the Day, is by J.S. Bach (1685-1750) from his collection The Great Eighteen Chorale Preludes.  The first section features the melody in the top voice (soprano),with a bridge to the second with the melody in the pedal (bass).

The Strong Name of the Trinity
The Strong Name of the Trinity

The Strong Name of the Trinity   The ENTRANCE HYMN, “I Bind Unto Myself Today” (604) is by St. Patrick (c. 380-460), missionary to Ireland.  This translation was prepared by C. F. Alexander for St. Patrick’s Day in 1889.  This version of the tune is from 1906.  Patrick and his followers sang this hymn as they fled the wrath of King Loegaire who demanded they honor a heathen festival.

Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Sabaoth!   “Sabaoth” is Hebrew for “heavenly hosts.”  In place of the Offertory today, we sing “We Praise You, O God,” known in Latin as “Te Deum Laudamus.”The authorship of the Te Deum is unknown, although it has often been associated with St. Ambrose and St. Augustine. It has long been considered worthy of the status of the three ecumenical creeds.  It is both a confession of faith and a great and ancient canticle of adoration and praise.

The HYMN TO DEPART “God the Father, Be Our Stay” (505) is Martin Luther’s (1483-1546) revision of a medieval litany.  A communion hymn, “Isaiah, Mighty Seer” (960) is also by Luther, both text and tune, based on the Sanctus (Isaiah 6.1-4).

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