Good Friday (English)

Crux2.jpg

This Friday is Good Friday, the only day of the year on which the Church does not celebrate Mass. Instead, we solemnly commemorate the Passion of the Lord. According to St. Thomas Aquinas, this because the Solemn Commemoration of the Passion makes the Passion even more present on Good Friday than the Mass does - which is an image of the Passion. The central rite of this liturgy is the Adoration of the Cross, the proper chants of which are contained in this post.


Antiphon

We adore your Cross, O Lord, we praise and glorify your holy Resurrection, for behold, because of the wood of a tree, joy has come to the whole world.
— Roman Missal (3rd edition)

Simple English setting:

Solemn English setting:


The Reproaches

My people, what have I done to you? Or how have I grieved you? Answer me!
— Roman Missal (3rd edition)

Simple English setting:

Solemn English setting:

Ant. My people, what have I done to you? Or how have I grieved you? Answer me!

V. Because I led you out of the land of Egypt, you have prepared a Cross for your Savior.

Ant. Hagios o Theos, Holy is God, Hagios Ischyros, Holy and Mighty One, Hagios Athanatos, eleison himas. Holy and Immortal One, have mercy on us.

V. Because I led you out through the desert forty years and fed you with manna and I brought you into a land of plenty, you have prepared a Cross for your Savior. Hagios o Theos…

V. What more should I have done for you and have not done? Indeed I planted you as my most beautiful chosen vine and you have turned very bitter for me, for in my thirst you gave me vinegar to drink and with a lance you pierced your Savior’s side. Hagios o Theos…

V. I scourged Egypt for your sake with its firstborn sons, and you scourged me and handed me over. My people…

V. I led you out from Egypt as Pharaoh lay sunk in the Red Sea, and you handed me over to the chief priests. My people…

V. I opened up the sea before you, and you opened my side with a lance. My people…

V. I went before you in a pillar of cloud, and you led me into Pilate’s palace. My people…

V. I fed you with manna in the desert, and on me you rained blows and lashes. My people…

V. I gave you saving water from the rock to drink, and for drink you gave me gall and vinegar. My people…

V. I struck down for you the kings of the Canaanites, and you struck my head with a reed. My people…

V. I put in your hand a royal scepter, and you put on my head a crown of thorns. My people…

V. I exalted you with great power, and you hung me on the scaffold of the Cross. My people…


The Crux Fidelis

Faithful Cross the Saints rely on, Noble tree beyond compare! Never was there such a scion, Never leaf or flow’r so rare, Sweet the timber, sweet the iron, Sweet the burden that they bear!
— Roman Missal (3rd edition)

Ant. Faithful Cross the Saints rely on, Noble tree beyond compare! Never was there such a scion, Never leaf or flow’r so rare!

Ant. Sweet the timber, sweet the iron, Sweet the burden that they bear!

  1. Sing, my tongue, in exultation of our banner and device!
    Make a solemn proclamation of a triumph and its price:
    How the Savior of creation conquered by his sacrifice! Faithful Cross…

  2. For, when Adam first offended, eating that forbidden fruit,
    Not all hopes of glory ended with the serpent at the root:
    Broken nature would be mended by a second tree and shoot. Sweet the timber…

  3. Thus the tempter was outwitted by a wisdom deeper still:
    Remedy and ailment fitted, means to cure and means to kill;
    That the world might be acquitted, Christ would do his Father’s will. Faithful Cross…

  4. So the Father out of pity for our self-inflicted doom,
    Sent him from the heav’nly city when the holy time had come:
    He, the Son and the Almighty, took our flesh in Mary’s womb. Sweet the timber…

  5. Hear a tiny baby crying, founder of the seas and strands;
    See his Virgin Mother tying cloth around his feet and hands;
    Find him in a manger lying tightly wrapped in swaddling bands. Faithful Cross…

  6. So he came, the long-expected, not in glory, not to reign,
    Only born to be rejected, choosing hunger, toil, and pain,
    Till the scaffold was erected and the Paschal Lamb was slain. Sweet the timber…

  7. No disgrace was too abhorrent: nailed and mocked and parched he died;
    Blood and water, double warrant, issue from his wounded side,
    Washing in a mighty torrent earth and stars and oceantide. Faithful Cross…

  8. Lofty timber, smooth your roughness, flex your boughs for blossoming;
    Let your fibers lose their toughness, gently let your tendrils cling;
    Lay aside your native gruffness, clasp the body of your King! Sweet the timber…

  9. Noblest tree of all created, Richly jeweled and embossed:
    Post by Lamb’s blood consecrated; Spar that saves the tempest-tossed;
    Scaffold-beam which, elevated, carries what the world has cost! Faithful Cross…

  10. Wisdom, pow’r, and adoration to the blessed Trinity
    For redemption and salvation through the Paschal Mystery,
    Now, in ev’ry generation, and for all eternity. Amen.