The Spirit of the Lord was written for the baptism of our daughter on Advent 2A, when the appointed texts from the Revised Common Lectionary include the story of John the Baptist from Matthew’s gospel, and the Isaiah 11 passage from which the traditional baptismal blessing (invoking the spirit of the Lord to rest upon the baptized) is adapted. They were the perfect texts for a baptism, and inspired me to create this motet. The opening chant text from Acts 1:5 connects Christ’s baptism to our own. The final line of text, taken from the psalm for Advent 2A, turns the blessing around, as we thankfully sing, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who alone has done wondrous things.”
The motet can also be performed without the opening chant, which may be more appropriate if used as a general benediction.