January 22, 2021

Pic & Cantata of the Week (Quinquagesima)

January Sunrise. Photo by David Cornwell

(Click on picture to see larger image)

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EPIPHANY VIII (Quinquagesima)

Bach Cantata BWV 22: “Jesus took unto him the twelve”

Quinquagesima is the name for the Sunday before Ash Wednesday. The name originates from Latin quinquagesimus (fiftieth), referring to the 50 days before Easter Day. Bach wrote four cantatas for this Sunday, BWV 22, BWV 23, BWV 127, and BWV 159.

Today’s choice from BWV 22, “Jesus took the twelve to himself,” is fitting for those who are preparing for the beginning of Lent. This season marks Jesus’ journey to the cross, and this alto solo speaks of following Jesus up to Jerusalem to join him in his suffering.

This deeply personal expression of devotion is enhanced and given emotional force by the lovely oboe obligato melody which accompanies it.

Mein Jesu, ziehe mich nach dir,
Ich bin bereit, ich will von hier
Und nach Jerusalem zu deinen Leiden gehn.
Wohl mir, wenn ich die Wichtigkeit
Von dieser Leid- und Sterbenszeit
Zu meinem Troste kann durchgehends wohl verstehe!

My Jesus, draw me after you,
I am ready, I want to go from here
and up to Jerusalem to your suffering.
Happy am I, if the importance
of this time of suffering and death
I can thoroughly understand for my consolation.

Text by Richard Stokes

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Photo by David Cornwell at Flickr. Creative Commons License


  1. I thought that was a David C. photo, then I scanned down and there he was. Are there filters involved there? Post production?

    • David Cornwell says

      ChrisS, sorry to be so slow replying to you.

      The sunrise is pretty much as I remember it. The woods are across the road from my house, and this is what I see on many mornings looking out the front window.

      However I do use post processing techniques with my photographs. I edit them mostly in Photoshop Lightroom. Almost all my photos are shot in raw format, which means they must be processed in order achieve their best rendition or artistic sense. One can shoot in jpeg format, and the camera does most of the processing, although some adjustments can be made in Lightroom or similar software.

      Many photos have a post-production artistic effect. Ansel Adams most important work was in his darkroom.

      A lot of the editing is necessary, such as adjusting highlights, shadows, whites, blacks, clarity, vibrance, and saturation. And if one wants to go on, there can be local editing of many of the same attributes. If one shoots in raw format and did none of the adjustments, the photograph would usually be very flat and without appeal.

      Some photographers use Photoshop or other software to add or subtract elements from a photo. For instance in a photograph where clouds would make the picture a better one, they add clouds. For me that’s crossing a line. I never add these kind of elements to a photo. Sometimes there may be a distracting element, such as a wire that can be erased, but it can be a lot of trouble.

      And there are plugins for Photoshop and Lightroom that use software filters. Some of these are similar to filters that are used on camera lenses, such as a circular polarizer to bring out the blue in a sky, or to inhibit glare.

      • Thanks David. There was a certain depth to the pinks and yellows that caught my eye. Thanks for the elaboration. I was completely unaware of all that software.

  2. The text is very striking. I want to go to your suffering. That is not sensical to the carnal mind. It sounds absurd and a bit masochistic with a dose of melodrama. Still, even in the natural world, there are comparisons. A mother to her child. Two lovers. Romeo to Juliet. The desire to bear another’s suffering is emblematic of a deep connection; love and oneness of being. We continue to this very moment to bear His sufferings if we consent to it. In that way we are a salve. He said, “It is finished” but as with all paradox it continues. We bear about in our bodies His suffering. It’s all part of the ongoing universal drama that we are only catching bits and snippets of.

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