INTROITUS: Holy Thursday

Nos autem gloriari oportet in cruce Domini nostri Jesu Christi: in quo est salus, vita, et resurrectio nostra: per quem salvati, et liberati sumus.

“We shall pride ourselves in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christus. In him is our salvation, life, and resurrection. Through him we are redeemed and set free.” (cf. Gal 6:14)

Click here to listen to an audio recording of the chant.
Sung by Liborius Lumma, Innsbruck (Austria).

This is the only introit in the Paschal Triduum: the Good Friday liturgy and the Easter Vigil begin in different manners.

And indeed we can understand Nos autem as the headline or the key to the entire Easter celebration: The text does not mention the events of Holy Thursday themselves; instead it gives a clear statement on everything to come: Cross, resurrection, life, salvation. The Triduum in its entirety is celebrated in the perspective of resurrection. We celebrate our own salvation (resurrectio nostra) in all of its aspects as narrated in the Bible. We already know that life will win over death, and that makes us understand what is going on step by step.

The most wonderful detail in this introit is the melodic parallelism between in cruce Domini Jesu Christi and salus, vita, et resurrectio nostra. The message of the Cross – Jesus sticking to his Gospel and to God even if his life is in danger– and the message of the resurrection – in Jesus life wins over death – are the same.

One comment

  1. Thank you for pointing out that there is only one introitus for the entire Triduum. This is evidence of the unity of the three celebrations — a point that is important, and was blurred by the insertion of the sign of the cross at the beginning of the Vigil in the most recent revision of the Roman Missal.

    But back to the introit. I personally love the text of this antiphon. It says so much; it is a message to carry in our hearts throughout the whole of the Triduum. The music too, the “melodic parallelism” that Liborius notes, is “doing theology.” Much food for thought here!

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