Proclaiming the Seven Days of Creation in the Daily Office

An old post with some updating.

As the effects of Global Warming are ever more obvious Christians have a particular duty to remember that creation is gift. Weaving the story of creation into our daily prayer is one way of doing this. The Liturgie Chorale du People de Dieu (LCPD) is probably the most worked out and complete post Vatican 2 musical setting of the Daily Office in any language. It is a breathtaking piece of work by three French priests. Texts are written, compiled and translated by  Jean Philippe Revel and Daniel Bourgeois and the music is written by André Gouzes a Dominican. Gouzes is based at the beautiful Abbaye de Sylvanes (pictured above) from where the books of music may be purchased along with recordings. Workshops, retreats and residential conferences are also held at the Abbey which is a restored monastery and a centre for the study and practice of liturgy.

The LCPD  forms the basis of the liturgy of the Jerusalem Community although they have made many adaptations and use the Jerusalem Bible Psalter rather than the new translation prepared for LCPD. The music is also used by the St Jean de Malte community of ‘diocesan monks’ where Revel and Bourgeois are based. I’ve also seen the music used in other parishes in France where some form of the Office is sung (for instance at the parish church in Saintes). LCPD is deliberately ecumenical drawing on Gregorian and Byzantine chant as well as Lutheran chorales.

Reproduced below are the texts and the music for the daily Proclamation which takes the place of the Invitatory / Opening psalm of the Office. When I stayed with the Communauté de Jerusalem in the early 1990s I was able to join in with some of the sessions working on English translations of the Office, sadly these were never completed and the work never published.  I don’t know if I ever had the texts for Sunday and Friday in English, if so I have lost them so the translations are mine, the others are by the working group. My long-suffering vicar, Father Richard Deadman, and I, in my title parish in Middlesbrough  would sing a simple sung Office each day beginning with these. I think they work rather well.

In these times when the planet is under increasing risk these meditations on the days of creation are ever more important and significant. Traditionally in the Western Church the seven days of creation are marked in the ferias hymns of Vespers. The best translation is JM Neale’s in the English Hymnal. The late hermit Brother Aelred Seton Shanley Obl.OSBCam. Produced two series both of which are to be found in Hymns for. Or I gotta and Evening LTP. One series is in my own collection used for the Office here.

A Word file and PDF with these texts and music for each day on is in a  folder called LCPD on the Company of Voices Resources website.

The LCPD also has a text to use on any feast day and in some of the volumes a ‘Proclamation of the Feast’. Who knows, one day I may get round to translating some of these.

The text is sung by the cantor and all sing the double Amen response.

Proclamation of the Day


In the beginning, on the first day of the week, +

when the Lord created the heavens and the earth, *

when the Spirit hovered ov-er the waters, ^

behold the Word of the Lord re-sounded: *

/ “Let there be light! And there was light.” /

Jerusalem, raise your voice, for behold your Light, +

over the People of God shines the glory of the Most High; *

when the fullness of time comes, +

God, who has spoken by his Son, makes known his glory, ^

the son who upholds the universe by his po-w’rful Word, *

/ True light, that shows all people his coming in-to this world. /

When the Christ was lifted up on the Cross as a flame, +

He makes the light shinein our hearts;  ^

on the morning of the Pasch he is risen, *

/ bathed in Light, as in a robe. /

In his flesh he assumes his splen-dour and majesty, *

he is the new day that the Father has given, +

Day of glad-ness and day of joy; ^

now we are enlightened in the Lord, +

for his glory is in our hearts, *

/ and the Lamb has become the light of the new Je-rusalem. /

Walking in the light of the Lord, we awake the dawn! +

Drinking of the source of Life within the Ho-ly Spirit, *

and in the light of the sonwho has saved us, ^

We will see the uncreated light of the Father, *

/ and we will sing the glory of God three times holy, now and for a-ges unending. /


On the second day, the Lord God of heav’n and earth, ^

established his throne in the heaven saying +

“Let there be a firmament to separ- ate the waters.” *

/ and the firmament of heav-en became the dwell-ing of his glory. /

The vault of heaven proclaims the work of his hands, +

because in the heavens he established the Word of his covenant; ^

“My love which I founded forever in the heavens, *

/ I will establish in the de-scendants of David, my beloved.”/

Bless Christ the Lord in the firmament of his glory; +

From the east he rises up and comes forth: ^

On the paschal morn he was raised up, light for up-right hearts, *

and the King of glory opened for us the gates of heaven: *

/ all those he leads in his way shine like the resplend-ent vault of heaven. /

As we await the new heavens and the new earth, +

let the God of heav-en be blessed for ever, ^

the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit, +

/ to the Trinity be praise and glor-y for a-ges unending. /


On the third day, the voice of the Lord, resounded in the depths of the wa-ters: +

“Let the waters gather to-gether and the dry land appear!” ^

He trampled the waves and the roar-ing waters;*

/ by his word he brings forth every green plant, and every fruit bearing tree. /

By the obedience of Noah, he saved us from the flood, +

by the faith of Moses, he led his peoplethrough the Red Sea, ^

and in the fullness of time, +

the voice of the Father resounded on the wat-ers of the Jordan: ^

“This is my Beloved Son in whom I am well pleased:” *

/ The Lamb of God was baptised in wat-er, to save us from sin and death. /

He was raised up from the earth on the Tree of Life plant-ed on Calvary, *

from his side flowed a river of living water +

the river of the Spirit which brings joy to the church, the cit-y of God: ^

and on its bank grow trees of every kind which bear fruit, *

/ and their leaves heal the heart of those who have not known Christ. /

Let those who are thirsty come and drink the water of life, ^

let them join the praise of the companions of the Lamb: *

/ “Glory! Honour! Power to the Holy Trin-ity, for a-ges unending.” /


On the fourth day, The Lord God who dwells in unapproachable light +

created the sun, the moon and the stars, *

to govern the dayand the night, ^

and to mark the days of our seas-ons and feasts, *

/ and turn our hearts to the Rising Sunwho comes to save us. /

Jesus, the true light, +

chose to make his dwelling in the Vir-gin’s womb; *

like a champion, he came out of the brid-al chamber, ^

and leaping forth, joyful and filled with strength, +

he has opened the way of the Pasch, *

/ He came down from heaven to earth, to lead us from earth to heaven. /

When he died on the cross, +

the sun and moon lost their light, *

on seeing the death of the Just one for the unjust; ^

but on the third day he was raised up, *

/ and his eyes, more brilliant than the sun, brighten the new Je-rusalem. /

On the last day, +

the sign of his cross shall appear in all its glory, *

the sun will darken, the moon and the stars will lose their light, ^

and behold coming down out of heav-en from God *

/ the new Jerusalem, beautiful as a bride prepared to meet her husband. /

Her face will shine with the light of God, +

she will not need the sun to shine, ^

for God will be her light, *

/ in the joy of an eternal wed-ding feast for a-ges unending. /


On the fifth day, the Lord and Master of Life, +

created all living things in the depths of the sea, and in the heights of heaven, ^

he blessed them saying, +

“Be fertile and multi-ply!” *

/ and behold they sprang forth to live in the water and in the breath of the Spirit. /

On the day of his coming, +

the Lord spoke to the heart of Jerusalem, *

/ “How I have longed to gather your children like a bird gathers its young un-der its wings!” /

In dying on the cross he stretched out his arms, +

image of the Tree of Life in the new and e-ter-nal Kingdom, ^

/ and the birds come to seek refuge in its branches, far from the nets of the fowler. /

And we who await in faith his glorious re-turn, +

have been plunged into the waters of baptism in the bath of life: *

henceforth, the monster who reigns in the waters has no power over us, +

because Jesus the Christ, the Son of God, the Saviour, ^

like Jonah, spent three days and three nights *

/ engulfed in the belly of the Monster, in the depths of the sea. /

Raised up on the third day, +

he told his disciples: “Cast your nets in-to the sea,” *

an image of the good news thrown like a net into the seaof humanity, ^

so that all people, gathered into the Kingdom, *

/ might sing the glory of God for a-ges unending. /


On the sixth day God comp-let-ed the work of his hands, ^

while his infinite Wisdom played with him, as a be-lov-ed child, *

/ He said:  “Make hu-man-ity in our image, and in our likeness.” /

In his image he created him, +

and made him from the dust of the earth, *

/ and God showered him with blessings for he saw that it was very good. /

What are we, Lord, that you remember us, +

That you made is almost equal to the angels, *

crowned us with glo-ry and splendour; ^

but we turned a-gainst you, *

/ broke the Cov-enant and left the house of the Father. /

God so loved the world, +

that he gave us hiso-nly Son, ^

the image of the invisible God, the first-born of all creation, *

/ to renew in his flesh all things in heav’n and on earth. /

He came in human likeness, +

to become the High Priest merci-ful and faithful, *

/ and to make all humanity resp-lendent in the glory that was predestined. /

For this reason God exalted him and made him Lord, +

so that in Him we could put on the new humanity, ^

for he always predestined that we would reproduce the image of his son, *

/ so that we would sing his glory in the Holy Spirit, now and for a-ges unending. /


On the seventh day God rested +

having finishedall his work, ^

/ inviting all creatures to enter in-to God’s rest. /

In mercy for us sinners +

the Creator gave us the Son, +

and the Word took flesh a-mong us ^

/ in the flesh of Mary, daughter of Sion, God chose a place of growth and rest. /

After dying on the cross, +

the Master of the Sabbath was laid down in the earth, *

and on the seventh day rested in the tomb, ^

so that all might be accomplished, *

/ he went to preach the good news to the prisoners of death. /

On the paschal morn, +

he opens a new day that will never end, *

this is the day when Christ enters his rest, ^

we have welcomed in faith his word of truth, *

/ and we await in hope to enter into the rest and peace of his love. /

So let us sing to the Father, the Son and the Ho-ly Spirit, *

/ to whom be glo-ry for a-ges unending. /


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s