2016 Christmas Celebration


2016

Sally Magnusson introduces carols and readings from Haddington, with St Mary's Church choristers and congregation, and Edinburgh Academy Chamber Choir.


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Transcript


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Welcome to Haddington, in the heart of East Lothian,

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and the beautiful St Mary's Church.

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With just a few minutes to go to Christmas Day,

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we're joining the congregation and friends in the community

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for readings and carols to celebrate the birth of Christ.

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We start in traditional style, with Once In Royal David's City.

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# Once in royal David's city

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# Stood a lowly cattle shed

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# Where a mother laid her baby

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# In a manger for his bed

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# Mary was that mother mild

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# Jesus Christ, her little Child

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We begin our story with the Gospel of Luke.

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It's the familiar account of Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem,

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but in a new translation called The Message.

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In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus,

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that all the world should be registered.

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This was first the registration, and was taken

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while Quirinius was governor of Syria.

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All went to their own towns to be registered.

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Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee,

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to Judea, to the city of David,

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called Bethlehem,

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because he was descended from the house and family of David.

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He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged,

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and who was expecting a child.

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While they were there, the time came for her to deliver the child,

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and she gave birth to her first-born son,

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and wrapped him in bands of cloth and laid him in a manger

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because there was no place for them in the inn.

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# Away in a manger

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# No crib for a bed

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# The little Lord Jesus

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# Laid down his sweet head

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# The stars in the bright sky

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# Looked down where he lay

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# The little Lord Jesus

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# Asleep on the hay

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# The cattle are lowing

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# The baby awakes

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# But little Lord Jesus

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# No crying he makes

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# I love thee, Lord Jesus

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# Look down from the sky

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# And stay by my side

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# Until morning is nigh

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# Be near me, Lord Jesus

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# I ask thee to stay

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# Close by me forever

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# And love me, I pray

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# Bless all the dear children

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# In thy tender care

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# And fit us for heaven

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# To live with thee there. #

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As well as the Bible, we've also got some modern readings

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reflecting on what Jesus' birth means.

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This first one throws us forward to the end of his life

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when he rode into Jerusalem on a donkey to be tried.

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No room in the inn, of course,

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And not much room in the stable

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What with the shepherds, Magi, Mary,

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Joseph, the heavenly host -

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Not to mention the baby

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Using our manger as a cot.

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You couldn't have squeezed another cherub in

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For love nor money.

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Still, in spite of the overcrowding,

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I did my best to make them feel wanted.

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I could see the baby and I

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Would be going places together.

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# I saw a fair maiden

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# Sitten and sing

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# She lulled a little child

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# A sweete lording

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# Lullay, mine liking

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# My dear son, my sweeting

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# Lullay, my dear heart

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# My own dear darling

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# That same Lord is he

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# That made alle thing

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# Of alle lordes he is Lord

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# Of alle kinges King

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# Lullay, mine liking

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# My dear son, my sweeting

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# Lullay, my dear heart

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# Mine own dear darling

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# There was mickle melody

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# At that childes birth

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# All that were in heavenly bliss

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# They made mickle mirth

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# Lullay, mine liking

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# My dear son, my sweeting

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# Lullay, my dear heart

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# Mine own dear darling

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# Angels bright sang their song to that child

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# "Blessed be thou and so be she

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# "So meek and so mild"

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# Lullay, mine liking

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# My dear son, my sweeting

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# Lullay, my dear heart

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# Mine own dear darling. #

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In that region there were shepherds living in the fields,

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keeping watch over their flock by night.

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Then an angel of the Lord stood before them

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and the glory of the Lord shone around them and they were terrified.

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But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for see,

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"I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people.

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"To you is born this day in the city of David a saviour

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"who is the Messiah, the Lord.

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"This will be a sign for you.

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"You will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth

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"and lying in a manger."

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And suddenly there was with the angel

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a multitude of the heavenly host,

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praising God and saying,

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"Glory to God in the highest heaven,

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"and on earth peace among those whom he favours."

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete

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# Tempus adest gratiae Hoc quod optabamus

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# Carmina laetitiae Devote redamus

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete!

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# Deus homo factus est Natura mirante

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# Mundus renovatus est A Christo regnante.

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete!

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# Ezechielis porta clausa pertransitur

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# Unde lux est orta Salus invenitur

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete!

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# Ergo nostra concio

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# Psallat iam in lustro

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# Benedicat Domino Salus Regi nostro

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete!

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# Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus

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# Ex Maria virgine, gaudete! #

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This was the moment when Before

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Turned into After, and the future's

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Uninvented timekeepers presented arms.

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This was the moment when nothing

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Happened. Only dull peace

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Sprawled boringly over the earth.

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This was the moment when even energetic Romans

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Could find nothing better to do

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Than counting heads in remote provinces.

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And this was the moment

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When a few farm workers and three

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Members of an obscure Persian sect

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Walked haphazard by starlight straight

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Into the kingdom of heaven.

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# Sing this night

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# For a boy is born in Bethlehem

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# Christ our Lord

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# In a lowly manger lies

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# Bring your gifts

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# Come and worship at his cradle

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# See his star shining bright

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# In the sky this Christmas Night

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# Follow me joyfully

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# Angels bright

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# Come from heaven's highest glory

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# Bear the news

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# With its message of good cheer

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# Sing, rejoice

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# For a King is come to save us

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# See his star shining bright

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# In the sky this Christmas Night

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# Follow me joyfully

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# See, he lies in his mother's tender keeping

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# Jesus Christ in her loving arms asleep

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# Shepherds poor come to worship and adore him

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# Offer their humble gifts before the son of Mary

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# See his star shining bright

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# In the sky this Christmas Night

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# Follow me joyfully

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# Let us all pay our homage at the manger

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# Sing his praise on this joyful Christmas Night

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# Christ is come bringing promise of salvation

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# See his star shining bright

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# In the sky this Christmas Night!

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# Follow me joyfully

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary

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# Hurry to Bethlehem and see the son of Mary! #

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Matthew's gospel has the story of the Three Kings.

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We pick it up at the point

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where the star has led them to the baby Jesus.

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On entering the house,

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they saw the child with Mary his mother,

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and they knelt and paid him homage.

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Then, opening their treasure chests,

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they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

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And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod,

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they left for their own country by another road.

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When Herod saw that he had been tricked by the wise men,

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he was infuriated, and he sent and killed

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all the children in and around Bethlehem

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under the age of two.

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MEN SING:

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WOMEN SING:

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ALL SING:

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I am Joseph, carpenter,

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Of David's kingly line,

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I wanted an heir, discovered

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My wife's son wasn't mine.

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I am an obstinate lover,

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Loved Mary for better or worse.

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Wouldn't stop loving when I found

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Someone Else came first.

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Mine was the likeness I hoped for

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When the first-born child came

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But nothing of him was me. I couldn't

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Even choose his name

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I am Joseph, who wanted

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To teach my own boy how to live.

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My lesson for my foster son:

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Endure. Love. Give.

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CHOIR SINGS:

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ALL SING:

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Thank God for empty churches and bursting shops

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For the soldiers' Christmas Eve patrol

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For starvation and gluttony

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For reckless, randy playboys

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For tenements and prisons

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For boring sermons and trivial TV

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For minds warped by bent schooling

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For drunks and thugs

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For wreaths made out of holly

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For mucked-up sex and prudery

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For comfortable affluence

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For ignorance and selfishness

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For foreigners in foreign lands

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For missiles and war toys

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For hymns that can't be understood

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For me, and mine

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Thank God for these, else we would soon forget

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The work to which Christ came, and why

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And lose the meaning of this cosy celebration.

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HYMN: Who Would Think That What Was Needed

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It is not true that this world and its people

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are doomed to die and be lost.

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This is true -

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God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son,

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that whosoever believes in him shall not perish,

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but have everlasting life.

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It is not true that we must accept inhumanity and discrimination,

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hunger and poverty, death and destruction.

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This is true -

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I have come that they may have life, and that abundantly.

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It is not true that violence and hatred

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should have the last word,

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and that war and destruction have come to stay forever.

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This is true -

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unto us a child is born, and unto us a son is given,

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and the government shall be upon his shoulder,

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and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God,

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the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.

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# O holy night!

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# The stars are brightly shining

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# It is the night of our dear saviour's birth

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# Long lay the world in sin and error pining

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# Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth

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# A joy of hope

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# The weary world rejoices

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# For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn

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# Fall on your knees

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# Fall on your knees

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# O hear the angel voices O hear the angel

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# O night divine Voices, o night, o night

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# O night Divine, when Christ

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# When Christ was born Was born

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# O night divine O night divine

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# O night, o night divine O night, o night divine

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# Fall on your knees

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# O hear the angel voices

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# O night divine

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# O night when Christ was born

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# O night divine

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# O night, o night divine

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# Led by the light of faith serenely beaming

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# With glowing hearts by his cradle we stand

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# So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming

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# Here came the wise men from the Orient land

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# The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger

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# In all our trials born to be our friend

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# He knows our need

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# He knows our need

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# He guardeth us from danger He guardeth us from

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# Behold your King! Danger, behold

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# Behold and lowly bend! Your King, before him bend

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# Behold your King Behold your King

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# Behold and lowly bend! Before him lowly bend

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# He knows our need

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# He guardeth us from danger

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# Behold your King

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# Before him lowly bend!

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# Behold your King

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# Before him lowly bend! #

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Our next reading was written by a girl

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who died when she was just a teenager,

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but it's so full of optimism.

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It's from a diary -

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the diary of Anne Frank.

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It's difficult in times like these -

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ideals, dreams and cherished hopes rise within us,

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only to be crushed by grim reality.

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It's a wonder I haven't abandoned all my ideals,

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they seem so absurd and impractical.

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Yet I cling to them because I still believe,

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in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.

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It's utterly impossible for me to build my life

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on a foundation of chaos, suffering and death.

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I see the world being slowly transformed into a wilderness,

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I hear the approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too,

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I feel the suffering of millions.

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And yet, when I look up at the sky,

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I somehow feel that everything will change for the better,

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that this cruelty too will end,

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that peace and tranquillity will return once more.

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In the meantime, I must hold on to my ideals.

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Perhaps the day will come when I'll be able to realise them.

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# I had a dream that I was standing on a hillside

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# And all the lights of town were shining far below

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# When up in the air beautiful voices

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# Sing a new song Let everyone know

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the hills and over the valleys

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the world

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# Somebody spoke to me I knew it was an angel

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# He said there's something that I think you ought to know

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# Then he just smiled, said "Don't be afraid now"

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# Sing a new song Let everyone know

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the hills and over the valleys

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the world

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# And then he told me all about the baby Jesus

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# How to find him Where exactly I should go

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# Then he was joined by millions of others

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# Sing a new song Let everyone know

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the hills and over the valleys

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the world

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# Well, did I dream or was I really on that hillside

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# On that Christmas night so very long ago?

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# When he was born Jesus our saviour

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# Sing a new song Let everyone know

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the hills and over the valleys

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# Oh and love shone down

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# Over the world

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# Over the world. #

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We're almost at the end of our Christmas Celebration,

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I hope you've enjoyed it.

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Wherever you are, have a very merry Christmas.

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WOMEN SING:

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MEN SING:

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ALL SING:

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When the world was dark and the city quiet,

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you came.

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You crept in beside us.

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And no-one knew.

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Only the few who dared to believe

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that God might do something different.

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Will you do the same this Christmas, Lord?

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Will you come into the darkness of tonight's world -

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not the friendly darkness

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as when sleep rescues us from tiredness,

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but the fearful darkness,

0:39:310:39:33

in which people have stopped believing

0:39:330:39:35

that war will end or that food will come

0:39:350:39:39

or that a government will change

0:39:390:39:42

or that the Church really cares?

0:39:420:39:45

Will you come into our lives

0:39:460:39:48

if we open them to you and do something different?

0:39:480:39:52

When the world was dark and the city quiet,

0:39:540:39:58

you came.

0:39:580:40:00

You crept in beside us.

0:40:000:40:01

Do the same this Christmas, Lord.

0:40:030:40:05

Do the same this Christmas.

0:40:050:40:08

CONGREGATION SINGS:

0:41:090:41:12

ALL SING:

0:41:490:41:52

MEN SING:

0:42:320:42:34

ALL SING:

0:42:420:42:45

# Yea, Lord, we greet thee

0:42:550:43:01

# Born this happy morning

0:43:010:43:06

# Jesus, to thee, be glory given

0:43:060:43:18

# Word of the Father

0:43:180:43:25

# Now in flesh appearing

0:43:250:43:31

# O come, let us adore Him

0:43:310:43:50

# Christ the Lord! #

0:43:500:43:59

Sally Magnusson introduces carols and readings from Haddington to take us into Christmas morning, with St Mary's Church choristers and congregation, and Edinburgh Academy Chamber Choir.