Come, Creator Spirit

One of the ancient liturgical music forms that I am coming to enjoy is the Gregorian chant. This obviously makes me a lot less cool than these guys, but I am O. K. with that.

All that aside, I love the beautiful simplicity of this style. Here’s a sample of a chant from the 9th century:

Veni Creator Spiritus (Come, Creator Spirit)

Come, Holy Ghost, Creator blest,
and in our hearts take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heav’nly aid,
To fill the hearts which Thou hast made.

O Comforter, to Thee we cry,
Thou heav’nly gift of God most high,
Thou Fount of life, and Fire of love,
and sweet anointing from above.

O Finger of the hand divine,
the sevenfold gifts of grace are thine;
true promise of the Father thou,
who dost the tongue with power endow.

Thy light to every sense impart,
and shed thy love in every heart;
thine own unfailing might supply
to strengthen our infirmity.

Drive far away our ghostly foe,
and thine abiding peace bestow;
if thou be our preventing Guide,
no evil can our steps betide.

Praise we the Father and the Son
and Holy Spirit with them One;
and may the Son on us bestow
the gifts that from the Spirit flow.

V. Send forth Thy Spirit, and they shall be created.
R. And Thou shalt renew the face of the earth

Let us Pray
O God, Who didst instruct the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Ghost: give to us, in the same Spirit, to know what is right, and ever rejoice in His consolation. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, Who with Thee livest and reignest in the unity of the same Holy Spirit, God. World without end. Amen

You can listen to (and download if you choose) an excellent performance of this song and follow along with the Latin lyrics while you listen.

It may not be “hip,” but it has sound theology and has endured over 1,200 years. That’s got to count for something!


3 thoughts on “Come, Creator Spirit

  1. Amen to this entire post. I have both Gregorian and Eastern Chant on the playlist regularly. I hope to add some recommended recordings to the “music” section of my site soon of both. I also like the fact that the contemplative and simple but profound nature of church chant is the complete opposite of today’s musically hedonistic culture.

  2. Led to this hymn via Mahller’s 8th symphony; wanted to hear the message. It is very moving, after reading it suggest you also read from Genesis 1 – 3 as you listen. Sad to see evidence of the apostasy of the trinity concept in this chant, having taken hold so early in the history of Christianity.

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