The Antiphon, O quantum in cruce, found in Laudes Vespertinae, the Cistercian collection for Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, is the perfect meditation on the Holy Father’s Lenten Message. The melody is full of compunction and a tender, pleading love. In the past I have often had the schola sing it with a faux–bourdon (a fourth below the melody), changing the si bémols (flats) to si naturals. The effect is extraordinary.
Here is an English translation of the Latin text:
O, how much upon the Cross
didst thy bowed head, O Christ,
thy hands flung wide,
thy open heart
breathe forth love.
Son of God who didst come to redeem the lost,
condemn not the redeemed
crying out to Thee from the valley of tears.
Good Iesu, hear thou our groaning,
and take not the measure of our crimes.
We implore thy wounded Heart,
O tender God.