Late Have I Loved You
(Sero te Amavi)
Saint Augustine of Hippo is considered one of the Latin fathers of the Church and one of the most significant Christian philosophers and theologians. His works helped shape the practice and foundation of biblical thought throughout the medieval era. In 386, Augustine converted to Christianity and between 397 and 400 wrote this text, "Late Have I Loved You" from The Confessions, which outlines his life struggles of finding his faith. "Late Have I Loved You" cries a man who did not convert his faith until his late thirties and begs to be forgiven.
Performers should take great care in the fluidity of each line, proper text stresses, and allow the longer notes to generate energy so as to not sound stagnant. It may be prudent to have a few soprano I's double the soprano II throughout, so that the S2 plays a more dominant role. The "alleluia" was added to the text to give a more celebratory emotion, as if you have finally found something that you have been searching for your whole life.
Commissioned by the St. Augustine's Chamber Choir - Christ Church, St. Joseph, Missouri