God’s Own Son is Born a Child, God the Father is Reconciled

Music from Epiphany Processions and Carols

Download the service leaflet here; please click on the links below to hear music from this service.

Processional Hymn:

‘He whom shepherds once came praising’ (Quempas Carol)

Karen Kerswell, Margo Perl, and Janet Inman Haigh singing in procession

Liturgical Processions serve the purpose getting the clergy and choir into and out of church, but they also symbolize the act of pilgrimage–journeying from our ordinary lives into to holy place for the purpose of worship. The extended procession at the beginning of this service is meant to evoke the very first Christian pilgrimage–the star-led journey of the Magi to the manger at Bethlehem.

In this procession, “detachments” of the adult and children’s choirs process around and sing antiphonally from the four corners of the Nave as well as the Choir Loft, singing together and joined by the congregation on each refrain.

The “Quempas Carol” gets its name from the first two syllables of its Latin title, Quem pastores laudavere (He whom the shepherds praised).  This is a 14th-century carol that tells the story of the angels’ appearance to the shepherds and the shepherd’s subsequent journey to Bethlehem to see the Christ child.

Other Hymns and Carols:

Niles, arr. Warrel: Jesus, Jesus, rest your head

Davies: O little town of Bethlehem
Marcia McKenna, soprano

arr. Shaw: Unto us is born a Son

Dyson: Nunc dimittis
Rod Sanders, baritone

Held: Saw you never in the twilight
Lisa Jennings, soprano

Nelson: The Coming of God to Earth

Lisa Jennings accompanied by Mark Chaney

Hymn 94, While shephards watched thier flocks (Winchester New)

Hymn 119, As with gladness men of old (Dix)

Hymn 82, Of the Father’s love begotten (Divinum mysterium)

Hymn 497, How bright appears the Morning Star (Wie schön leuchtet)

Stewart Haigh reads a lesson

More pictures at the Trinity Shuetterfly site here.

Epiphany Processions and Carols This Friday

This service celebrates the Epiphany of our Lord, the twelfth and final day of Christmas, which is the completion and fulfillment of the Advent and Christmas seasons.

Some themes that run throughout the service:

Light:  At Epiphany the wise men are led to the infant Jesus by the guiding of a star, in spite of the dark motives of those who would thwart God’s loving purpose.  The light of this same star–in the person of Jesus Christ and in the form of his holy Word–remains undimmed as a source of guidance and illumination in our lives today.

Pilgrimage:  Epiphany commemorates, among other things, the very first Christian pilgrimage.  The arduous journey of the Magi would have required great faith to undertake and even greater determination to carry out.  The extended procession at the beginning of the service recalls this extraordinary act of devotion.

Tension between the Cradle and the Cross:  Precursors of the ultimate purpose of Christ’s incarnation are found throughout the Biblical narrative of his birth.  The gift of gold symbolizes Christ’s kingship, but the gift of myrrh foretells his death; the story of the Magi is followed immediately by the slaughter of the Holy Innocents; Simeon is overjoyed to the sight of the infant Messiah but warns Mary that a sword will pierce her soul.  As Pastor Iain put it in his sermon this past Sunday, we must follow Christ not only to Bethlehem but also to Calvary.

Music for the Service:

Victoria: O magnum mysterium
Marshall: He comes to us
Davies: O little town of Bethlehem
Ballet: Lute Book Lullaby
arr. Warrel: Jesus, Jesus, rest your head

94, While shephards watched their flocks by night
119, As with gladness men of old
128, We three kings of Orient
82, Of the Father’s love begotten
497, How brightly shines the Morning Star

Download a poster for this service here

Highlights from Advent Lessons and Carols

Click on the links below to hear music from this service.  Download the service leaflet here.

Antiphons chanted beautifully by the tenors and basses of the choir:

O Sapientia

O Wisdom, proceeding from the mouth of the Most High,
Pervading and permeating all creation, mightily ordering all things:
Come and teach us the way of prudence.

O Adonai

O Adonai and Ruler of the house of Israel, Who appeared to Moses in the burning bush
and gave him the Law on Sinai:
Come with an outstretched arm and redeem us.

O Radix Jesse

O Root of Jesse, who stands for an ensign of the peoples,
Before whom kings are mute and to whom the nations will do homage:
Come quickly to deliver us.

O Clavis David

O Key of David and Scepter of the house of Israel,
You open and no one can close, You close and no one can open:
Come and rescue the prisoners who are in darkness
and in the shadow of death.

O Oriens

O Dayspring, Splendor of Light everlasting:
Come and enlighten those who sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death.

O Rex Genitum

O King of Nations,
The Ruler they long for, the Cornerstone uniting all people:
Come and save us all, whom you formed out of clay.

O Emmanuel

O Emmanuel, our King and our Lord,
The Anointed for the nations and their Savior:
Come and save us, O Lord our God.

Other anthems and carols:

Hymn 56, O come, O come Emmanuel (Veni, Emmanuel)

Schütz: O liebe Herre Gott
Lisa Jennings and Kristine Chaney, sopranos

O lieber Herre Gott, wecke uns auf, das wir bereit sein wenn dein Sohn kömmt, ihn mit Freuden zu empfahen, und dir mit reinem Herzen zu dienen, durch denselbigen deinen lieben Sohn, Jesum Christum.  Amen

O dear Lord God, awaken us that we may be prepared when your Son comes, that we may greet him with joy, and serve you with pure hearts, through your only beloved Son, Jesus Christ.  Amen

– Martin Luther (1483-1546)

Vulpius: Es ist ein Ros entsprungen
Lisa Jennings, soprano; Fran Gilbert, alto

Es ist ein Ros’ entsprungen aus einer Wurzel zart.
Wie uns die Alten sungen, von Jesse kam die Art. 

Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming from tender stem hath sprung!
of Jesse’s lineage coming, as those of old have sung.

Hymn, All earth is hopeful (Toda la tierra)

Dyson: Magnificat

Schop: How lovely shines the Morning Star
Lisa Jennings and Kristine Chaney, sopranos

Hymn, People, look east, the time is near (People Look East)

Jennings: Springs in the Desert

Rorem: Mercy and truth are met together

Hymn 60, Creator of the stars of night (Conditor alme siderum)

Hymn 57, Lo! he comes with clouds descending (Helmsley)

For additional pictures of the service,  please visit the Trinity Shutterfly site here.

Lessons and Carols for Advent This Wednesday

This event is being offered as an Advent family night of fellowship and worship. It is meant to be a quiet moment of reflective preparation amid the fuss and bother of this hectic season. Through our fellowship, our prayer, and our singing I hope that the evening will be a useful tool in making our hearts and minds ready for the celebration of Christmas. Childcare is provided.

Aside from the readings and the singing, a notable feature of this service will be a set of seven banners with symbols for each of the Great O Antiphons. The banners were designed specifically for this service and they were made (traced, cut, sewn, ironed, appliqued, hemmed, and otherwise lovingly wrought) by women in our choir. They will be processed into the church one by one as the service progresses, and after the service we will hang them over the balcony for the remainder of Advent and Christmas.

The symbols on the banners, derived from the Old Testament, are as follows:

O Wisdom – Scroll
O Adonai (“Lord and Ruler”)- Burning Bush
O Root of Jesse – Tree
O Key of David – Key
O Dayspring – Rising Sun
O King of the Nations – Crown
O Emmanuel (“God with us”) – Star and Manger