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Christmas caroling finds home inside

“Soon it will be Christmas Day.” That was the ending line from one of America’s most loved Christmas songs — “Silver Bells,” with Bing Crosby’s recording of it forever ingrained in our holiday mind sets.

That, and many more songs will be presented at 6 p.m. Tuesday at New Covenant Church, as I once again go into concert, performing on the ‘ole Steinway piano.

But, this will be no “ordinary” concert; it will be more along the lines of a big sing-a-long, with everyone from the community welcome to come join into the choir of fellowship and fun. Song-sheets will be provided for everyone, so there will be no confusion on the lyrics.

Some years ago, “Caroling in the Park” took place each holiday season, and was hosted in beautiful Memorial Park. Standing beneath the majesty of the old live oaks, those gathered would lift their voices to sing the joyous songs that are familiar to us all, dealing with subjects ranging from a jolly fat elf to the birth of our Savior. I had the honor of playing for the event several times, and I always was struck by the great diversity of folks who would attend, and the fellowship that was enjoyed.

The event has not taken place for a couple of years, and several have missed it, including myself. So, I decided to hold a similar version at New Covenant. Granted, it will not have the same ambiance as that of the park setting, but I can assure you the weather will be perfect inside the church! There should be little chance of rain, wind or cold inside the sanctuary, but anyone wanting to stand outside would be free to do so!

As was the venue at the park, the theme will be varied. Sure, there will be songs dealing with the anticipation of the arrival of Santa. And who could leave out that holiday classic dealing with a reindeer with a bright, shiny red nose? Or maybe a snowman that springs to life?

There will be songs aimed at the “adult” sect, such as that one dealing with the simplicity of roasting chestnuts on an open fire. Or how about “I’ll Be Home for Christmas?”— a classic if ever there was one. Maybe even an Elvis song; a rocking rendition of “Blue Christmas.”

Never to  be left out will be the traditional songs of the church, the true beginning and basis for caroling. “Joy to the World,” “Hark The Herald Angels Sing,” “Angels We Have Heard on High.” These are just a few of the many wondrous hymns that will be sung, and maybe a brief explanation of the origins of such hymns. There is so much beauty and meaning contained in the songs dealing with the birth of Christ!

I mean, really! How could anyone not enjoy Christmas music? And, again, this will not be music that you sit passively and listen to, no! You will be the principle instrument by the use of your voice, combined with the chorus of others, all lifted together in praise, song and story.

And don’t say you can’t sing — everyone can sing. We are told to “make a joyful noise,” and folks, that we can do! Singing gets the blood flowing, relieves stress, opens the nasal passages and gets the lungs operating at peak performance. The advantages are many, so don’t think that you can’t sing; you can!

The concert is free to the public, but I would ask you this; if you can, please bring a canned item — from a regular size to even a restaurant size — to be given to The Stewpot.

All items will be promptly turned over to them, to help them in their mission to feed the needy of our community.

So, let’s see if we can help them build up their larder a little, and help them in their work.

I sincerely hope to see you at 6 p.m. Tuesday at New Covenant Church. Bring a friend with you.

Grab your children or grandchildren, and let’s get them to singing! May all the blessings of our Lord be upon each and every one of you, not only for the Christmas season, but for the approaching New Year.

 

Burnley Cook is organizer of the Christmas caroling concert at New Covenant Church.