Have mercy on me, God, in accord with your merciful love;
Based on Psalm 51, the Miserere Mei Deus by Gregorio Allegri is a piece of music so powerful, that it was deemed playable only at very specific times. It was meant only to be used for the Tenebrae, meaning Matins and Lauds, during the final three days of Holy Week, at the Sistine Chapel.
This is a much longer piece of music than is usually posted – and these are different days. I invite you to set aside the time to give a listen if you can.
Earlier in the week I read something in Give Us This Day which has lodged in my heart all week long. The very first words of the psalm begin with:
For the leader. A psalm of David, 2when Nathan the prophet came to him after he had gone in to Bathsheba.
After he had gone in to Bathsheba… One thing that I think of is this… as a people tend to judge and criticize people for their sexuality and behavior all the time. And yet, as humans, we do all kinds of things. David – King David literally took Bathsheba for himself, not to mention killing her husband, Uriah Heap, to make sure that there was no trouble.
This is not to say that this is OK, but if God forgives David – forgiveness that King David asks for in this psalm, for what he did, where does this leave us? Why do we punish one another so, when God is so ready to forgive us?