Singing in the season!

Published: Sunday | December 22, 2013 Comments 0

Church leaders list top Christmas carols

Jodi-Ann Gilpin, Gleaner Writer

It would just not be Christmas if we did not hear The First Noel, Silent Night, or We Three Kings. But whatever the favourite hymns, the music of Christmas moves the Church.

For Bishop Rohan Edwards, head of the Jamaica Association of Full Gospel Assemblies, the hit O Holy Night is a must-sing every Christmas.

"This song really ministers to me and, by extension, my congregation. For me, it is not just for Christmas Sunday or the season, it is sung anytime throughout the year," said Edwards.

"I think this song gives a clear picture of what really happened and how we should celebrate Jesus," added Edwards, as he appealed to Jamaicans to put Christ at the centre of the season.

"I am really disappointed that we have begun to commercialise the season. The songs are not sung with any meaning and people just make a mockery of the whole celebration, and we have to change that," declared Edwards.

The Reverend Lenworth Anglin, executive chairman of the Church of God in Jamaica, was able to share his top Christmas hymns without a thought.

"Joy To The World, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, and Oh Come All Ye Faithful. I think these songs speak the message of Christmas so clearly and joyfully. I find that the words are fitting for the season and capture how the scripture records the birth of Christ," Anglin told The Sunday Gleaner.

"I would hope that we not only sing these songs but continue the tradition in making sure that it's not just about having a grand time, but that the focus is centred on Jesus," said Anglin.

The songs Joyful Joyful Lord, Once In Royal David's City, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing and Oh Come All Ye Faithful are the favourites for Pastor Merrick Walker and his congregation at the Washington Seventh-day Adventist Church.

"These songs are sung every year for as long as I can remember, especially Once In Royal David's City."

Archbishop of Kingston, The Most Reverend Charles Dufour, told The Sunday Gleaner that for most Catholic churches there are five top songs that are sung.

"In our churches, the songs that stand out are Joy To The World, Oh Come All Ye Faithful, Silent Night, Oh Little Town Of Bethlehem and Once In Royal David's City.

"For me, I look forward to singing Once In Royal David's City. Something about that song always gets me happy, and it's a song that is sung regularly in our churches," said Dufour.

He also used the opportunity to convey Christmas greetings to Jamaica.

"It's a wonderful time of the year, and I wish Jamaica a blessed Christmas and one that will bring peace and comfort," said Dufour.

The First Noel

The First Noel, the angels did say

Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay

In fields where they lay keeping their sheep

On a cold winter's night that was so deep.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

They looked up and saw a star

Shining in the east beyond them far

And to the earth it gave great light

And so it continued both day and night.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

And by the light of that same star

Three wise men came from country far

To seek for a King was their intent

And to follow the star wherever it went.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

This star drew nigh to the northwest

O'er Bethlehem it took its rest

And there it did both pause and stay

Right o'er the place where Jesus lay.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

Then entered in those wise men three

Full reverently upon their knee

And offered there in His presence

Their gold and myrrh and frankincense.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

Then let us all with one accord

Sing praises to our heavenly Lord

That hath made Heaven and earth of nought

And with his blood mankind has bought.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel

Born is the King of Israel!

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