“Once in Royal David’s City, Stood a lowly cattle shed,
Where a Mother laid her baby, in a manger for his bed;
Mary was that Mother mild, Jesus Christ her little child.”
The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols is a special service celebrating the birth of Jesus that is traditionally followed at Christmas. It is one of the many events surrounding the season of Advent in the liturgical Church calendar.
Through specially selected music and traditional scripture readings, the service spotlights essential events in the Christian narrative: the story of the fall of humanity, the promise of the Messiah, and the birth of Jesus. The nine short readings—or “lessons”—come from Genesis, the prophetic books, and the Gospels, and are interspersed with Christmas carols, hymns, and arias.
The annual service of Lessons and Carols at King’s College in Cambridge has popularized the service, ever since its first debut in 1918. Since then, it has spread and become a traditional holiday favorite all over the world. Our own service follows the traditional style of King’s College, with a few selections from choral music. It is truly a delight for the whole family. We invite you to join us!