December 24, 2012 PART I | Year C Christmas Eve

"It's coming on Christmas
They're cutting down trees
They're putting up reindeer
And singing songs of joy and peace
Oh, I wish I had a river
I could skate away on"
Joni Mitchell

Often my theme song for Advent.

I'm not really sad, but at times a wee bit melancholy.

January marks the anniversary of the death of both my parents--many, many years ago now, but memories of quiet, illness-centered Decembers haunt me a bit.

Past sadness yields to present-moment joy.

I'm anticipating my daughter and grandson's arrival. The best Christmas present ever.

I am readying for pageant rehearsals and a glorious hour with a mess of kids tomorrow afternoon. We will sing our Christmas favorites, secular and sacred. Rudolph, with all the additional responses, is a must and Angels We Have Heard on High with the GLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORIAS makes me smile (WIDE and BIG) with every GLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

I guess this is a long way of saying I need to remind myself (often and everyday) of the great joy and privilege that is my job. AND, sometimes Christmas is a very real and true mix of many opposite emotions. And that, as my yoga teacher says all the time, "is all good!"

This post we'll just take a look at our Christmas Eve pre-service music. I'll post the Christmas Eve service in a day or so. 

The prelude music this Christmas Eve, directed/arranged by the Rev. Jim Friedrich (if we are blessed with enough voices) will include Sherburne and Milford (from The Sacred Harp), and a few other carols that do not make the regular service playlist. Here are some inspiring arrangements/performances to ponder.

Milford just gives me the shivers! LOVE it, one of my favorites.

See Amid the Winter's Snow. Annie Lennox. Nuff said.

The Wexford Carol. Yo-Yo Ma and Alison Krauss. Beauty.

The Truth from Above. We have a concertina in our group, but an accordion would be, well, FABULOUS! 
I can dream. :)