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NEW HYMNS FOR CHRISTMAS

from A Treasury of Faith by Gracia Grindal


Adoration of the Shepherds Giorgione, Venetian, 1477/1478 - 1510

The old Scandinavian calendars began Christmas on Santa Lucia, December 13 and lasted until January 13 with St. Knud's day when the Christmas trimmings were brought down. In England Christmas was officially over on Candlemas, February 2, the day of the Presentation of Jesus in the temple. That was forty days after Christmas, in line with the forty days required for the ritual cleansing of the mother and the presenting of the child. Today Christmas music, especially on the radio, is done with at midnight Christmas Day, which is a pity. There are a wealth of topics and events in Jesus' birth and early life to sing about in this time. Then there are special days all through the twelve days as well--Holy Innocents, and saints days (which I will address on their own day). These hymns are focused on Christmas, now just a few days away. The composer of "Sleep, oh, sleep, Oh Dear Little One"João Wilson Faustini lives in Brazil, after a long period serving Presbyterian

churches in North America. He set my entire collection of Epistle hymns for series A in the lectionary. His work is extensive in church music. He has compiled the largest collection of sacred music in the Portuguese language. Next week the rest of the twelve days.







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