22 Dec 2019

Hymns on Sunday, 22 December 2019

From Hymns On Sunday, 2:30 am on 22 December 2019

This audio is not downloadable due to copyright restrictions.

If you haven’t had the chance to have a good Christmas singalong yet, then today’s programme is especially for you! Lots of the well-known carols, with a sprinkling of ones you'll want to get to know better.

Angel Musicians (left panel) - Hans Memling

Angel Musicians (left panel) - Hans Memling Photo: Wikimedia Commons


Artist: Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge
Words/Music: Anon trans Oakeley/Anon
Recording: Chandos CHSA 5096

O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant!
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem!
Come and behold him, born the King of angels;

O come, let us adore him,
O come, let us adore him,
O come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord!

God of God, Light of Light eternal,
lo, he abhors not the virgin’s womb;
Son of the Father, begotten, not created;

Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation,
sing, all ye citizens of heaven above:
“Glory to God, all glory in the highest!”


Artist: Handel and Haydn Society, Harry Christophers (dir)
Words/Music: Trad
Recording: Coro COR 16117

Angels we have heard on high
Singing sweetly o’er the plains
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why these joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be?
Which inspire your heavenly songs?

Come to Bethlehem and see
Him whose birth the angels sing;
Come, adore on bended knee,
Christ, the Lord, the newborn King.

See Him in a manger laid,
Whom the choir of angels praise;
Mary, Joseph, lend your aid,
While our hearts in love we raise.


Artist: Canadian Brass
Words/Music: Trad
Recording: Philips 426835

Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gath'ring winter fuel

"Hither, page, and stand by me
If thou know'st it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?"
"Sire, he lives a good league hence
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes' fountain."

"Bring me bread and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I will see him dine
When we bear him thither."
Page and monarch forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude wind's wild lament
And the bitter weather

In his master's steps he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, every man, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing


Artist: Elora Festival Singers
Words/Music: Cappeau trans Dwight/Adam
Recording: Naxos 8.573421

O holy night, the stars are brightly shining;
It is the night of the dear Saviour’s birth!
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope, the weary soul rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees, oh, hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born!
O night divine, O night, oh, night divine!

Led by the light of faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here came the wise men from Orient land.
The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger,
In all our trials born to be our Friend!
He knows our need – to our weakness is no stranger.
Behold your King; before Him lowly bend!
Behold your King; before Him lowly bend!

Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His Gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother,
And in His Name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy Name!
Christ is the Lord! Oh, praise His name forever!
His pow’r and glory evermore proclaim!
His pow’r and glory evermore proclaim!


Artist: Musica Sacra, Indra Hughes (dir)
Words/Music: Sears/Sullivan
Recording: Atoll ACD 207

It came upon the midnight clear,
That glorious song of old,
From angels bending near the earth,
To touch their harps of gold;
“Peace on the earth, good will to men,
From heav’n’s all gracious king.”
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.

Still through the cloven skies they come
With peaceful wings unfurled,
And still their heavenly music floats
O’er all the weary world;
Above its sad and lowly plains,
They bend on hovering wing,
And ever over its Babel sounds
The blessèd angels sing.

Yet with the woes of sin and strife
The world has suffered long;
Beneath the angel strain have rolled
Two thousand years of wrong;
And man, at war with man, hears not
The love-song which they bring;
O hush the noise, ye men of strife
And hear the angels sing.

For lo! the days are hastening on,
By prophet-bards foretold,
When with the ever circling years
Comes round the age of gold;
When peace shall over all the earth
Its ancient splendours fling,
And the whole world send back the song
Which now the angels sing.


Artist: Choir of Durham St Methodist Church, Wallace Woodley (dir and organist)
Words/Music: Murray/Eastgate
Recording: Private CD 817

Child of Christmas story,
stable straw and star,
small and sweet and gentle,
tell us who you are.

Child whose baby finger
round our own is curled,
come to melt our hearts,
and come to change the world.

Child of Jew and gentile,
child of white and black,
teach us how to love you,
teach us what we lack.

Child of Mary's courage,
birthed in human pain,
tell us what your name is,
be our hope again.


Artist: Oxford Pro Musica Singers, Michael Smedley (dir)
Words/Music: Trad/Trad arr Blackwell
Recording: Proud Sound PROU CD134

The Virgin Mary had a baby boy,
the Virgin Mary had a baby boy,
the Virgin Mary had a baby boy,
and they say that his name is Jesus.

He come from the glory,
he come from the glorious kingdom.
He come from the glory,
he come from the glorious kingdom.
O yes, believer! O yes, believer!
He come from the glory,
he come from the glorious kingdom.

The angels sang when the baby born,
the angels sang when the baby born,
the angels sang when the baby born,
and they say that his name is Jesus.

The shepherds came where the baby born,
the shepherds came where the baby born,
the shepherds came where the baby born,
and they say his name is Jesus.


Artist: The Graduate Choir, Terence Maskell (dir), Philip Smith (organ)
Words/Music: Trad
Recording: Atoll ACD 308

Ding dong! Merrily on high,
In heaven the bells are ringing:
Ding dong! verily the sky
Is riven with angel singing.
Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis! [Repeat]

E'en so here below, below,
Let steeple bells be swungen,
And io, io, io,
By priest and people sungen:
Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis! [Repeat]

Pray you, dutifully prime
Your matin chime, ye ringers;
May you beautifully rime
Your evetime song, ye singers.
Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis! [Repeat]


Artist: Festival Singers, Philip Walsh (organ)
Words/Music: C Wesley/Mendelssohn
Recording: Festivity Productions FRTCD 2007

Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new-born King!
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled."
Joyful, all ye nations, rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th' angelic host proclaim,
"Christ is born in Bethlehem."
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new-born King!

Christ, by highest heaven adored:
Christ, the everlasting Lord;
Late in time behold him come,
Offspring of the favoured one.
Veiled in flesh, the Godhead see;
Hail, th'incarnate Deity:
Pleased, as man, with men to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel!
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new-born King!

Hail! the heaven-born
Prince of peace!
Hail! the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
Risen with healing in his wings
Mild he lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die:
Born to raise the son of earth,
Born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new-born King !"

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