Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Eve

We celebrate Christmas Eve at Covenant Presbyterian with a Service of Lessons and Carols. Here is our explanation of the service:

A Festival of

Nine Lessons and Carols

This service, in its present form of nine lessons from Scripture with carols and anthems interspersed, goes back in history to late 19th century England. Lessons and Carols had its origin at Truro Cathedral (England) on Christmas Eve, 1880. The present format was introduced at Kings College Chapel, Cambridge, England in 1918. The BBC broadcast of the service each year helped popularize the service, and it was quickly duplicated by cathedrals and churches throughout the world. The Scripture lessons were chosen to illustrate the story of redemption, beginning in the Old Testament and ending in the New Testament. Originally, the readers formed a sequence, from the rank of chorister to Bishop. The carols were sung by the all male choir.

We have chosen to make some modifications to that format, while still following the basic progression. The heart of the service continues this day – that is, the retelling of the Christian’s story of faith from the fall of Adam to the coming of the Word Incarnate. This is a service of celebration and worship. The main theme is the development of God’s redemptive purpose through the words of the Bible. This is a corporate act of the Christian Community as we celebrate the anniversary of the birth of the Savior. We are summoned by the words of the carol:

“Come and worship, Come and worship

Worship Christ the newborn King.”

We welcome you to this service as we celebrate the birth of Jesus our Savior.

“Thanks be to God for His inexpressible gift!”

I'll post a modified order of service tomorrow.

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