The Communion Antiphon of today’s Mass merits close attention. The text is borrowed from the Divine Office where it serves as the Magnificat Antiphon at First Vespers of the Second Sunday of Advent. Today we repeat it as, one by one, we approach the Holy Mysteries. Addressing herself to Christ in His Eucharistic advent, we sing, “Come, O Lord, and visit us with peace, that we may joy before you in tranquility of heart.” Veni, Domine, visitare nos in pace, ut laetemur coram te corde perfecto.
The Latin text speaks of “a perfect heart,” meaning a heart made whole. Christ, by the forgiveness of sins, restores wholeness and tranquility to the broken and troubled heart. By His word of forgiveness, He restores the heart’s capacity for joy in His presence. “Who can forgive sins, but God alone?” (Lk 5:21).
Hear the word of the Lord, O nations,
and declare it to the ends of the earth;
Behold our Saviour comes,
and will not delay (cf. Jer31:10; Is 35:4).
May our prayer of petition rise before