Saturday, June 13, 2015

Heil sei euch geweihten!

Some reading this post know that I will be ordained to the priesthood later this morning. I both need and seek prayers for myself and my fellow ordinandi as we begin our ministry as Catholic priests. Having wondered from time to time what I might write on this blog to mark the event of the ordination, I can think of nothing better than to share some music, specifically the final chorus from Mozart's Die Zauberflöte, a work I've often described as the one thing I would listen to if, for some reason, I were only able to hear one musical work for the rest of my life. As I reflect back on the decade-long process of moving from the novitiate to ordination in the Society of Jesus, some of the words of this chorus seem particularly appropriate. On the day on which the ordained are newly-acclaimed, it is fair to acknowledge that the road to ordination has been long and sometimes difficult - we have all had to "push through night" in some sense, striving with faith and patience to reach this day. Though the cult of Isis and Osiris has been superseded by the revelation of the one true God ("Et antiquum documentum / Novo cedat ritui," as St. Thomas reminds us in the Pange Lingua), I would nonetheless endorse the call to "crown . . . beauty and wisdom with an eternal crown" as being in full harmony with the Christian vocation. As for Sarastro's opening lines about rays of sunlight dispelling the night and so on... well, it all sounds great when he says it.
Die Strahlen der Sonne
Vertreiben die Nacht.
Zernichtet der Heuchler
Erschlichende Macht.

Heil sei euch geweihten!
Heil sei euch geweihten!
Ihr dranget durch Nacht.
Dank! Dank!
Dank sei Dir, Osiris!
Dank! Dank!
Dir, Isis gebracht!
Es siegte die Stärke
Und krönet zum Lohn
Die Schönheit und Weisheit
Mit ewiger Kron!


The rays of the sun
Drive away the night.
Destroyed is the hypocrites'
Surreptitious power.

Hail to you who are consecrated!
Hail to you who are consecrated!
You pushed through night.
Thanks! Thanks!
Thanks be to you, Osiris!
Thanks! Thanks
Be brought to you, Isis!
May power be victorious
And crown as a reward
Beauty and wisdom
With an eternal crown.
Peace and good wishes to all. AMDG.


At 6/15/2015 12:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations Joe!

At 6/16/2015 3:30 PM, Blogger David said...


Ad multos annos! Be assured of my prayers.



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