PODCAzT 78: A Vespers hymn dissected “O Lux Beata Trinitas”; Fr. Z on the SSPX

It has been a while since I did a PODCAzT, but I figured it was time to plunge back in.

Today we will drill into a hymn sung by Holy Church in the Liturgia horarum for Sunday Vespers every other Sunday, on weeks II & IV.  It is called O Lux Beata Trinitas, and it is very ancient.

I dissect this hymn, sing it in the Gregorian chant tone, and we hear different translations and many other musical versions.

Once again I ramble a great deal while digging into the meaning of the hymn.

Also, there is no way that I cannot comment on the recent lifting of the excommunications of the four bishops of the SSPX, the Priestly Society of St. Pius X.  I talk about some misconceptions, through a little Q&A and then give my opinion on what must be done to bring about greater unity.

Sing along with the hymns! Buy a Liber Hymnarius!

Along the way you might hear these versions of O Lux Beata Trinitas:

We are usually available on iTunes … though who knows since the whole Google/Feedburner thing went down


O lux beata Trinitas,
et principalis Unitas,
iam sol recedit igneus,
infunde lumen cordibus.

O Light, Blessed Trinity
And the very first Unity,
now the firey sun is receding,
put light into our hearts.

Te mane laudum carmine,
te deprecemur vespere:
te nostra supplex gloria
per cuncta laudet saecula.

In the morning we sing a song of praises,
In the evening we beseech you:
May our supplicant glorification
praise you the all ages.

Deo Patri sit gloria,
eiusque soli Filio,
cum Spiritu Paraclito,
et nunc, et in perpetuum.

Let there be glory to God the Father,
and to His only Son,
with the Consoler Spirit,
both now and forevermore.


Christum rogamus et Patrem
Christi Patrisque Spiritum
unum potens per omnia
fove precantes Trinitas.


Let us invoke Christ and the Father
and the Spirit of Christ and the Father,
O Trinity, sole power in all things,
assist us who are praying

J. M. Neale (1818-1866)

O TRINITY of blessed Light,
O Unity of sovereign might,
as now the fiery sun departs,
shed Thou Thy beams within our hearts.

To Thee our morning song of praise,
to Thee our evening prayer we raise;
Thee may our glory evermore
in lowly reverence adore.

All laud to God the Father be;
all praise, Eternal Son, to Thee;
all glory, as is ever meet,
to God the Holy Paraclete.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. puella says:

    Fr., I must have looked like such a nerd here sitting on the floor with laptop in front of me, liber hymnarius on my lap and making notes in it with a pencil. But it was so much fun. Thank you!

  2. Brian says:

    A magnificent podcast, enlightening commentary on “O lux beata Trinitas,” and an excellent job chanting it. The commentary on the SSPX situation was as thoughtful and balanced as anything I have read on the topic.
    Thank you Father.

  3. TomB says:

    Thank you Father Z. Excellent.

  4. TomB says:

    iTunes is operative, FYI.

  5. Frank H says:

    iTunes may be working, but only this podcast seems to be available now, not the large archive that used to be displayed. Luckily the previous podcasts can still be found on the portion of this site noted in the left column.

  6. Denise says:

    Thank you, Father Z! This was truly excellent and enjoyable. I don’t have the liber hymnarius yet, but now it is on my list!

  7. Martin says:

    Re: “O Lux Beata Trinitas”

    Can anyone help me – I need to know which version, of those listed above, is the piece at 00:21:40 on the podcast.

    I note on Amazon, only perhaps one of these has online sound samples to listen to, so I can’t know which CD to order!

  8. RichR says:

    Yea! PodcaZt! My favorite!

  9. Creagh says:

    insightful and balanced. thanks Fr I look forward to the next “Z” Cast!

  10. Beth says:

    I can’t seem to download the podcaZt. It will stream ok but if I try to download it I get an ‘internet explorer cannot display the page’ error. I tried restarting my computer and that didn’t help. I’d really like to listen on my commute in the morning. Any suggestions?

    Thanks. :)

  11. Sid says:

    Thanks so much for this! And your singing is far better than mine. I have sung right along. And you have done such a fine job of showing us the historical background and the necessity of unity with the early Christians.

    For those of us who have trouble sight reading music but who can follow the notes when they are sung for us, how I wish that the entire Liber Hymnarius were on-line with audio and translations. I would incorporate it into my daily Office.

    Your remarks on the SSPX are wise, prudent, and highly recommendable.

    You are a master of this medium called Internet! We need more such masters.

  12. old believer says:

    Clement VIII did not revise (mutilate) the Office hymns, Urban VIII did.

  13. Sarah says:

    Yay! Podcast! I always look forward to them, Father. Thank you!

  14. Dominic says:

    Very balanced on the SSPX. Appreciated! God bless you, Father.

  15. Jillian says:

    Thank you for these podcazts, Father. I enjoy them very much and am learning a lot. Thank you! I will keep you in my prayers.

Comments are closed.