Written by Sherry
Sunday, 07 December 2008 12:36
One of the topics upon which I've been mulling (in my spare moments) is the way in which the Kerygma, the core Gospel message that awakens Christian faith and lays the foundation for catechesis, is so seldom articulated among us, and yet fills the carols that we treasure at this time of year.
I've been listening again this Advent to a cd recorded by friend-of-this-blog Kathleen Lundquist. Kathleen has a truly beautiful voice and recorded a number of less familiar carols, including the wonderful 17th century All My Heart This NIght Rejoices. Listen to Kathleen's recording here. (Scroll down to tack #5.)
All my heart this night rejoices,
As I hear, far and near, sweetest angel voices;
“Christ is born,” their choirs are singing,
Till the air, everywhere, now their joy is ringing.
Forth today the Conqueror goeth,
Who the foe, sin and woe, death and hell, o’erthroweth.
God is man, man to deliver;
His dear Son now is one with our blood forever.
Shall we still dread God’s displeasure,
Who, to save, freely gave His most cherished Treasure?
To redeem us, He hath given
His own Son from the throne of His might in Heaven.
Should He who Himself imparted
Aught withhold from the fold, leave us broken hearted?
Should the Son of God not love us,
Who, to cheer sufferers here, left His throne above us?
If our blessèd Lord and Maker
Hated men, would He then be of flesh partaker?
If He in our woe delighted,
Would He bear all the care of our race benighted?
He becomes the Lamb that taketh
Sin away and for aye full atonement maketh.
For our life His own He tenders
And our race, by His grace, meet for glory renders.
For it dawns, the promised morrow
Of His birth, Who the earth rescues from her sorrow.
God to wear our form descendeth;
Of His grace to our race here His Son He sendeth.
All My Heart was written by Johann Georg Ebeling, who in 1662 became the cantor, (naturlich!) of the St. Nicholas Church, the oldest surviving church in Berlin. Most of St. Nicholas was destroyed during World War II but it was meticulously rebuilt in the 80's on the original 13th century foundation.