Christmas is coming! (StF 166)

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‘Christmas is coming!’,
the Church is glad to sing

Source: Singing the Faith: 166
Words: John L. Bell
Music: “Advent ring” by John L. Bell
Metre: Irregular
Verses: 5 

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Ideas for use

John Bell describes this simply as ‘a teaching hymn’ and gives brief notes about how it might be sung:

“It is sufficient to have everyone sing the chorus with soloists, children or the choir taking the verses. Alternatively, from the 2nd Sunday in Advent onwards, the congregation can sing the ‘old’ verses and a child or adult soloist sing the new one as the relevant candle is lit. The song is suited to piano accompaniment.” (Innkeepers & Light Sleepers: seventeen new songs for Christmas, Wild Goose Publications, Iona Community, Glasgow 1992)

More information

John Bell’s ‘Christmas is coming!’ is one of three options included in Singing the Faith for those who want words to sing alongside the week-by-week lighting of the Advent candles. Drawn from the Iona Community collection, Innkeepers and Light Sleepers, this is a carol in which the idea of Christian community moves centre stage – Christ’s approach is something that ‘the Church is glad to sing’. In the final verse and chorus, for Christmas Day, we proclaim a corporate affirmation, ‘Christ is among us’.

The tune ‘Advent Ring’ shares (in its refrain) strong similarities with a traditional tune:

General Monk's March

General Monk’s March, still used as a Morris dance tune in England. General George Monk was a professional soldier who fought for both sides during the English Civil Wars. He paid an important role in neutralising the royalist threat in Scotland during the period of Oliver Cromwell’s English Protectorate. (Source: Music of Dalkeith: Scottish music and song for town and palace from the 1540s to the 1890s by Jack Campin)

See also Advent candles – three new hymns

Categories: Advent, Advent Ring, Bell, John L. (auth), Bell, John L. (comp), Christmas, Irregular, Young people.

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