Saturday, December 24, 2011
Christmas Eve Church Service Celebrates The Culmination Of Advent With “Festival of Lessons and Carols”
Kay Lynne and I just returned home from the Christmas Eve Church Service at our church, St. Andrews Lutheran in Bellevue, ready to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ who changed the world forever. Pictured above is the choir and orchestra processional.
We have expectantly awaited Christmas Day for slightly more than a month during the season of Advent on the Church calender. The word advent means “coming” or “arrival” and is observed in anticipation of Christ’s coming to earth as a babe in a manger.
In celebrating the Festival of Lessons and Carols, we joined with many churches in observing an historic format for worship to honor the birth of Christ. The Festival tells the story of the fall of humanity, the promise of the Messiah, and the birth of Jesus in nine short Scripture readings from Genesis, the prophetic books and the Gospels, interspersed with the singing of Christmas Carols and hymns.
Our service included the participation of our church chancel choir and brass and strings ensemble, which added a wonderful sense of celebration. We concluded by lighting candles and singing several Christmas Carols.
Now we are ready to enjoy the full meaning of Christmas, the celebration of the coming to earth of our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. In not too many minutes it will be Christmas morning.
Come, Lord Jesus. We are ready for your arrival.