|Mother & Child|
hand-printed linocut Christmas card
by Teresa Newham
The start of the Carol Service is one of the most evocative parts of Christmas - the first verse of Once in Royal David's City sung by a soloist, with the choir and congregation joining in the rest. At our church, those of us in the choir gather behind the font near the entrance while the lights are dimmed and one of our choristers sings the solo. Then we process down the aisle with our lighted candles, while those of the congregation are lit. The church is always packed, with latecomers standing at the back.
We follow the usual format, with nine lessons read from the Bible, interspersed with Christmas music from the choir and carols which everyone can join in, before we process out again as everyone sings O Come All Ye Faithful, followed by a rousing version of Gaudete by the choir round the font before everyone goes downstairs for mulled wine and mince pies. Christmas is coming!
Wishing you and your loved ones peace and joy this Christmas and a blessed and happy New Year.