|To hear the Seminary Singers sing "Chill of the Night" see link below
|The theme for the 36th annual Lessons & Carols service Dec. 3-4 at San Francisco Theological Seminary was “Rest, and Hear the Angels.” Nearly 500 people showed up to celebrate the Christmas season with the SFTS community, sharing songs and worship in Stewart Memorial Chapel.
The beloved carol, It Came Upon a Midnight Clear, contains the text from which this year’s theme originates:
Look now! For glad and golden hours
Come swiftly on the wing;
O rest beside the weary road,
And hear the angels sing.
Just as this carol, written by Edmund Hamilton Sears in 1849, has traditionally been sung in churches around the world for more than a century, SFTS was once again excited to invite people from throughout Marin County, and Seminary alumni and friends to this holiday celebration. The service traditionally attracts people from a broad spectrum of religious persuasions, making it one of the most popular campus events all year.
The candlelight service observes Advent's time of preparation and the coming of the Christ Child. Started in 1975 by SFTS Professors David Esler and Wil Russell, Lessons & Carols follows the pattern and liturgy of the Advent festival as presented in King's College Chapel at Cambridge University in England.
Over the years, the liturgy has been modified to include some contemporary musical compositions. However, the basic format of the service has remained unchanged from its rich original mix of selected scripture lessons, Advent hymns and Christmas carols. The program featured inspired readings from scripture, special music from the Seminary Singers, the Dobbins pipe organ and congregational singing.
A reception was held outside on the Geneva Terrace.