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February 2019



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Things to do in Advent 1: Advent hymns

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Every year, on the first Sunday in Advent, a candlelit service is held in our Minster Church. The church is in darkness to begin with, then the choir processes, singing O come, O come Emmanuel. I’ve always loved this hymn, with its hint of plainsong. This is the version I know.

O come, O come, Emmanuel!
Redeem thy captive Israel
That into exile drear is gone,
Far from the face of God's dear Son.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

Any other favourite hymns for the season?

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O Come Emmanuel is my favourite, but I love I Saw Three Ships and The Holly and the Ivy - and any of the medieval carols!

Edited at 2013-12-01 01:15 pm (UTC)
Yup, I like anything that sounds medieval, especially if it has Latin in! I love the carol that starts Personent, hodie, for example.

Time for Christmas icons!

Edited at 2013-12-01 02:59 pm (UTC)
'O come, O come, Emmanuel!' caught my attention from an early age. It's one of those pieces of music that can reduce me to tears quite easily.
I remember it from way back, too. These days, a lot of music makes me cry.
I love Latin and mediaeval carols too but my favourites are the Holly and the Ivy and the Coventry Carol. Lots of carols make me cry - particularly Balulalow from Britten's Ceremony of Carols.
Love all those. I've just noticed that I wrote about O Come, O Come last year, too. Must keep up these old Christmas traditions.
Our Advent service in the cathedral is very similar and very moving. The hymn is lovely and a favourite as well as other traditional ones such as the Coventry carol.

Time to change my theme today :)
I think most churches have something similar now. It's so atmospheric, especially in an old bulding; I bet Ely looks wonderful.

Who could resist a snowy cat?
Is Personent hodie the one that has the refrain (In the English version):

Sing aloud loud loud --- ?
I think so! I don't know it in English (we sang it at school) but you do get that repetition at the end of each verse, e.g. Et de vir, vir, vir, Et de vir, vir vir and so on.
That's the one! We sang it in Latin at school, but also in English in church for many years longer, so I've forgotten most of the Latin
Advent has all the best hymns! O Come, O Come is stunning, of course. I also love Lo, He Comes With Clouds Descending, Come Thou Long Expected Jesus and Hark The Glad Sound.
I love all those, too! And Of the Father's Love begotten.
Oh, how could I forget that?! It is absolutely one of my favourites. Proper hairs on the back of the neck tingling.
I love that one too. Our version went:

O come, O come Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That something something something drear
Until the Son of God appear.
That seems to be the more common version. I had to search online for a while to find 'mine'.
"O come, O come Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That waits in lonely exile here
Until the son of God appear"
was the version I learned. I love it too, and am listening to it right now, catching up on the Radio 3 Advent service, which I managed to miss yesterday. Glorious!
Someone's already commented that Advent has the best music. I'm inclined to agree.

We all seem deeply attached to 'our' version of O Come!
Lo He Comes and Of the Father's Love Begotten are my favourites. I used to love O Come O Come Emmanuel, and still like listening to it, but I have sung it far too often to enjoy that any more. And I have sung enough different versions that I am not especially attached to any!

At college we once sang a setting of Eleanor Farjeon's People, Look East which I really loved, but I don't know who wrote it. It's not the tune I've seen it set to in hymnbooks.
I don't know People, Look East; I must look it up. You're lucky to be able to sing, and to have been introduced to some of the more unusual music around.