This ancient Latin text evokes an element of chant which found it’s way into my setting. The stark open intervals depict mystery, in that we cannot comprehend the real meaning of “Light born of light”. As the music proceeds we realize that this is a quest for understanding. As we pray, the depth of this spiritual mystery becomes awe. We only glimpse at the true meaning of “Light born of light”. The choir utters “o nata” over and over and as it slips away we are left in awed silence.
O nata lux de lumine, Jesu redemptor saeculi,
dignare clemens supplicum laudes precesque sumere.
Qui carne quondam contegi dignatus es pro perditis,
nos membra confer effici tui beati corporis.
O Light born of Light, Jesus, redeemer of the world,
with loving-kindness deign to receive suppliant praise and prayer.
Thou who once deigned to be clothed in flesh for the sake of the lost,
grant us to be members of thy blessed body.
Office Hymn at Lauds, Feast of the Transfiguration