Christmas Vigil and Midnight Mass (2010)

Friday, 24 December 2010

Introit O Emmanuel (chant)
Opening Hymn O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Reading Isaiah 11:1-10 (A shoot springs from the stock of
Choir Benedicamus Domino (Peter Warlock)
Hymn In the bleak midwinter
Reading Luke 1:26-38 (The Annunciation)
Hymn Once in Royal David’s City
Reading John 1: 1-18 (In the Beginning was the Word)
Bishop’s entrance and procession to the crib Adeste Fideles
Gloria Gloria de Noël (Thomas Niel)
Reading Isaiah 9:2-7 (The people that walked in darkness)
Psalm Christmas Psalm (Bernadette Farrell)
Reading Titus 2:11-14 (God’s grace has been revealed)
Gospel Acclamation Celtic Alleluia (Fintan O’Carroll)
Reading Luke 2:1-14 (The Nativity)
Preparation of the gifts Still, Still, Still (trad. Austrian, arr. Janet Janzen)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Gathering Mass (Paul Inwood)
Agnus Dei from Mass of the Angels and Saints (Steven Janco)
Communion Lux Aurumque (Eric Whitacre)
Silent night
Postcommunion O little town of Bethlehem
Recessional Hark the herald angels sing

The continued sub-zero temperatures didn’t seem to deter people from attending, and the cathedral was packed for a celebration taking the form of Mass incorporating an extended vigil of Readings and Music. The people sang well too – notably in the colourful setting of the Gloria – aided and abetted by Celebration Brass. We had a solo oboe as well, ably played by Katy Cavanagh, in the choir piece at the Preparation of the Gifts.

For the Christmas Season we’ve turned to Paul Inwood’s Gathering Mass. Being so well-known, it’s ideal for a large gathering like tonight’s, when many present were not regular members of our worshipping community. The choral descants and brass arrangement made it sound just right for a special occasion too.

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