St. Therese Catholic Church, 2304 Lower Huntington Road, Fort Wayne, will host a Festival of Lessons and Carols on Monday, December 19, at 7 p.m. There is no charge, but a free will offering will be taken up to benefit the Saint Vincent de Paul Society of the parish. All are welcome.
Presented by the St. Therese music ministry, The Festival of Lessons and Carols is a service of Scripture and song dating back to the late 19th century. It began on Christmas Eve, 1878, with the choir of Truro Cathedral in Cornwall, England, singing in a temporary wooden structure while a new cathedral was being built. More than 400 people were in attendance.
“We have adapted this Festival of Lessons and Carols to reflect the season of Advent that moves into the celebration of Christmas,” said Beverly Rieger, St. Therese music director.
“The beautiful, candle-lit service is not precisely a Christmas concert,” she continued, “although attendees will experience beautiful Advent/Christmas music. The audience is invited to sing throughout, but it is not a Christmas Carol sing-a-long either,” said Ms. Rieger.
Actually, the service begins at 6:45 p.m. with prelude music, she added. It will be followed by a procession and an opening prayer led by Fr. Lawrence Teteh, C.S.Sp, pastor of St. Therese Church.
The lessons are six readings from the Old Testament and the New Testament, concluding with the reading of Joseph taking Mary into his home (Mt 1,18-24). After each lesson, there is music, including solos and Advent/Christmas hymns for the audience to sing with the choirs.
In addition to the St. Therese Choir, participants include Guest Organist Allen Goebbert; the One Voice St. Therese Children’s Choir; the Canterbury High School String Quartet; an ensemble group of guitar and vocalists; The Chimes Group; soloists from the Cantor Ministry; instrumentalists and additional vocalists.
After the service and closing remarks by the pastor, all are invited to a reception in the nearby Parish Hall.
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