Archives For Christmas

 


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Celebrating Incarnation

A Review of

Somethin’ Special:  
A Noel Paul Stookey Holiday Recollection

Neworld Media, 2018  
Buy Now: [ MP3 ] [ CD ]

Reviewed by Jeanne Torrence Finley


Our Top 10 Favorite Christmas Albums

Very few pop Christmas albums help us to celebrate incarnation, the central affirmation of Christianity, but I find in Somethin’ Special:  A Noel Paul Stookey Holiday Recollection many songs that point in that direction and offer a most moving encouragement to reclaim that connection.  This new full-length holiday CD released in early November presents the new, the traditional, and the disquietingly ordinary and says “Look in these stories and in these places. God is right before your eyes.”

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The Story of Carols

A Meditation for the Advent and Christmas seasons
 
By Tim Dowley,

Author of 

Christian Music:
A Global History

Tim Dowley

Paperback: SPCK, 2018
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]

 

Christmas Music for Those
Who Don’t like Christmas Music

 

*** All The Holiday Music
You Will Ever Need!

Carols fall into that category of things that people either love or loathe. Many warm to their traditional imagery and annual memories of Christmases past; others do their utmost to avoid them, associating carols with sentimental words and mawkish music.

Carols are normally narrative, contemplative or celebratory in content, often with a simple, straightforward sentiment and in strophic form. Most of the surviving medieval carols were written for the professional cathedral singers of Europe. Among the oldest is ‘Puer natus in Bethlehem’ (‘A Boy is Born in Bethlehem’), dating from the thirteenth century. Though the majority of carols were for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, others were for Holy Innocents’ Day, Epiphany and Twelfth Night  – for instance, the ‘numeral’ carol ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’, which appears in England from the eighteenth century onwards. The carol ‘The Seven Joys of Mary’, which appears with many variants in the UK and the USA, grew out of pre-Reformation devotion to the Virgin and has survived for centuries in vernacular devotional verses in the folk tradition. The carol ‘I Saw Three Ships Come Sailing In’, for which the earliest known printed text dates from 1666, possibly derives from European folk memory of the supposed journeyings of relics of the Magi, the ‘Three Kings of Cologne’.

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Christmas

For the upcoming Christmas season…
Ten of our favorite Christmas books!
By authors such as JRR Tolkien, Maya Angelou, and Madeleine L’Engle!

You still have a few days before Christmas to get these books from your local bookseller (or from Amazon)…

Most of these books are short and easy to read in one sitting!

 

[ Classic Christmas Stories – FREE Ebooks! ]

[ Our Favorite Christmas Albums! ]

 
 

#10

The Nativity 

By Julie Vivas

 

The biblical story of the Nativity is one about faith, love–and a miracle. With illustrations that are enchanting and unexpected, Julie Vivas reveals the human side to Mary’s story, beautifully imagining the Angel Gabriel delivering the news to her, the exhausting journey with Joseph to Bethlehem, and at last the deliverance of the baby Jesus.

 


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Over the last year, we have done a number of features on our favorite holiday music…

We recap these all for your listening pleasure in Advent, and the coming Christmas season!

Advent Music – A Playlist for the Season of Waiting

Rain for Roots, Josh Garrels, Tom Petty, Over the Rhine, MORE
Includes a Spotify playlist for streaming…

 
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A Special Christmas Gift for Our Faithful Readers…

 
We invite everyone who receives our weekly email digest in their inbox to receive a completely FREE 1-year subscription to our quarterly magazine (in digital format).
 
No Hidden Strings Attached!
We won’t collect your billing info, and charge you as soon as a year is up. We just want to raise awareness of our magazine, and where better to start than with those who read our weekly email… OF COURSE, you are welcome to subscribe to the magazine in print or give gift subscriptions at any time.
 
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Hailing from Cincinnati, Over The Rhine has been making some of the finest music around for over a quarter century…

 
OTR has especially made a name for themselves for with their annual Christmas tour, which they have been doing for almost two decades.
 

To liven up your holidays, here are three superb Christmas shows (from three different tours) that you can stream or download for FREE (via Archive.org)…

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CBrown-Cmas

Earlier this week, we featured Christmas music for those who don’t like Christmas music

But sometimes, I can be a sucker for the Christmas classics too. Here are 10 of my favorite Christmas albums:

 
You won’t find Bing Crosby here, but rather the classics nicely arranged in a variety of styles…

Download these digital albums and enjoy… 

Home for Christmas
Amy Grant

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SnowAngels

Music is an inevitable part of the Christmas season…
But what if you are weary of hearing the same old songs done over and over again? 

 
As we ramp up this week toward Christmas Day, here are eight of our favorite albums that don’t fit the typical Christmas music mold.
 
Download these digital albums and listen now… 

Songs for Christmas
Sufjan Stevens

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Christmas

Ten Classic Christmas Stories that are available as FREE ebooks! By authors such as Charles Dickens, LM Montgomery, L. Frank Baum (creator of Oz), George MacDonald, and MORE!

These ebooks are available for pretty much any e-reading device…

Load up your e-reader today with some of these classics and read these stories aloud throughout the holiday season!

 

 

#10

The First Christmas Tree

By Henry Van Dyke

CLICK HERE to download in non-Kindle Formats… (via Project Gutenberg)

 


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