Illumina faciem tuam super sanctuarium tuum:
et propitius intende populum istum,
super quem invocatum est nomen tuum, Deus.
Let your Face shine upon your sanctuary,
and graciously look down upon this people
over whom your name is invoked, O God.
(Dan 9:4, 17–19, Today’s Offertory Antiphon)
The Fourth Mode melody that clothes the prophet Daniel’s prayer in today’s Offertory Antiphon reaches its musical and theological summit over the words, Illumina faciem tuam super sanctuarium tuum, “Let your Face shine upon your sanctuary” (Dan 9:17). The light of the Eucharistic Face of Christ, the “Lord of Glory” (Jas 2:1) illumines the sanctuary during the Holy Mysteries. “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit” (2 Cor 3:18).