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Christmas Hymns: “Sing We Now of Christmas”

Known in French as “Noël nouvelet” and in English by both “Sing We Now of Christmas” and “Sing We a New Noel,” this is available only in the French hymnbook. The English translation is fairly standard across other denominations’ hymnbooks in which it is included.

I love the energy, the motion, and the minor tonality of this carol. If not done respectfully, it could get a little out of hand for a sacrament meeting. But done right, this could be a wonderful, worshipful addition to your Christmas Program. I recommend Fred Prentice’s arrangement. There are two versions, both SATB, one with a harp/piano part and the other is a cappella. The video below is of the a cappella version. At under two minutes, it goes by quick!

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Christmas Hymns: “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming”

This is a beautiful Christmas hymn known as “Es ist ein Ros entsprungen” in its original German. It is included in the Dutch, French, German, Icelandic, and Swedish LDS hymnbooks. According to Wikipedia, “The rose in the text is a symbolic reference to the Virgin Mary, and the hymn makes reference to the Old Testament prophecies of Isaiah which in Christian interpretation foretell the Incarnation of Christ, and to the Tree of Jesse, a traditional symbol of the lineage of Jesus.”

There are a few English translations, with the one by Theodore Baker being the most well-known. There is some discrepancy on how to accurately convey the meter of this hymn. The LDS versions are written in 4/4, so I have provided an English version that is written in 4/4 below (for other versions, click here):

If your ward choir has not sung this recently, I encourage you to introduce it to your choir members. It’s a wonderful LDS Christmas hymn that has been hidden right under many of our noses. Because it is unfamiliar to many, you could sing it in the standard hymnbook SATB form (a capella if your choir can do that). There are also many lovely arrangements available for purchase.

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