We talked a bit about Advent II and the O Antiphons in our parish podcast today. It got me thinking. Maybe it’s the second stage of the Advent season that needs that lift of a different color to signify a change in tone. If we shifted to rose for the post-December 16th period, I wouldn’t lobby for a return. A week of Gaudete would highlight the shift as we neared the Nativity.
Of course, that is all about the daily cycle of readings and prayers at Mass and in the Hours. The Sundays of Advent are really on a different track. And most Catholic parishioners who are regulars at Mass are paying more attention on Sunday than weekdays.
In the old days, I used to be a stickler about singing the O Antiphons–fourth Sunday only. These years, not so much. I still save Veni Emmanuel for the end of the season. But there are many adaptations of the O’s–some of the music is quite good and worthy.