Message: “A Festival of Lessons & Carols” from Angela Tipps

Angela Tipps - December 19, 2021

A Festival of Lessons & Carols

On Christmas Eve 1918, this service was introduced at King’s College, Cambridge, England, by Dean Eric Milner-White. He wanted to offer solace to people who were “distressed, exhausted, injured, and bereaved” at the end of World War I. Many of us find ourselves experiencing those same feelings as we come to the end of a second year in a pandemic. Last year the St. Paul’s Choir and Choristers offered a virtual Lessons and Carols, but this year we will be live, and we’d love for you to join us. The service begins at 4:30 with a treble soloist singing “Once in Royal David’s City,” followed by scripture and carols sung by the choir and congregation. We’ll end with the uplifting “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” as we anticipate Christmas Eve together in our beautiful nave. This year, our choir will offer a beautiful anthem, “Cradle Hymn” by the Norwegian composer Kiim Andre Arnessen. It was purchased in memory of our beloved Marilyn Castelli, mother of Maria Castelli Knox and her husband Kerry Knox, and grandmother of Grady and Ginny. Marilyn was a member of the Craddock Club, a 100-year-old study group named after the pseudonym of writer Mary Noiles Murfree, who was a member of St. Paul’s. The Craddock Club purchased this anthem in her memory, and many of the current members will attend this service. Marilyn sang with the St. Paul’s Choir often at Lessons and Carols when Grady and Ginny became choristers, so whenever we sing this anthem her beautiful soprano voice will be with us in spirit.

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