Advent Lessons and Carols: Sunday, December 3rd, Potluck 5PM, Service 7PM
Join us for a festival of Advent Lessons and Carols as we prepare for the birth of Christ. We will continue with Holy Trinity’s traditional Advent-kickoff pot-luck supper. It will be held before the 7:00 Lessons and Carols service, from 5:00-7:00. If you are able, please bring a dish to share for the potluck, and stay afterwards for the service at 7:00.
The Festival of Lessons & Carols has been a tradition at Holy Trinity for quite some time. But it is an even older and more widespread tradition than simply that of a Canadian Anglican parish in Edmonton. It is a world-wide ceremony with roots in Cambridge England that leads us into the age-old story of Christmas. The tradition began in 1918 at King’s College Chapel in Cambridge by the then Dean, Eric Milner-White. His concept was based upon a service originally used at the cathedral in Truro England in 1880 which was itself based upon even more accent sources and traditions. The custom grew and in 1928 the service of read lessons and sung choral carols was broadcast by the BBC, first in England and eventually world-wide. The service was eventually televised and continued to gain wider and wider attention throughout the world. The service was eventually adopted and adapted by churches around the globe and as we we gather to celebrate it this year we are in the company of people throughout the world gathering just as wee are to tell the story and sing the songs of the story of our Christmas redemption.
The Festival of Lessons and Carols for Advent is designed to portray moving from darkness into light as the world at Christmas moves from darkness into the light of the Incarnation of the Word (“and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us”). The initial (matin) responsory (” I look from afar”, sung responsively by cantor and choir) foretells the coming of the Saviour, and the lessons recount the prophecy leading up to the story of the Annunciation to Mary by the Angel Gabriel that she will bring forth a son, “and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which means, ‘God is with us’.”