Something a little different for the repertoire of carols for Christmas to use live, recorded or on Zoom (with appropriate licenses). It is a translation of a Polish carol, Gdy Sie Chrystus rodzi, set to the original Polish tune which can therefore be sung in English, Polish or simultaneously. I was introduced to the carol by Keith Trencher of Orrell who encouraged me to produce the translation. It was sung first in Orrell Church Street Methodist Church. God is born among us: earth receives the Christ child, all the night awakens, light dispels the darkness. Joyful angels raise an anthem singing praises to the heavens: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! Joyful angels raise an anthem singing praises to the heavens: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! In the fields the shepherds heard the angel chorus: 'Leave your sheep, go quickly, Bethlehem is calling!' There the Lord had come among us; God redeeming all creation: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! There the Lord had come among us; God redeeming all creation: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! All the hosts of heaven, all the heavenly powers, tell the story clearly, but we are confounded. This transcends our understanding, here in awe we gaze in wonder: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! This transcends our understanding, here in awe we gaze in wonder: Gloria, gloria, gloria, in Excelsis Deo! Andrew E Pratt (born 1948) translated from the Polish carol Gdy Sie Chrystus rodzi (see Singing the Faith, 200; Reclaiming Faith, 36) © 2003 Stainer & Bell Ltd. Metre: 12 12 16 15 16 15 Tune: TRADITIONAL POLISH Recordings: Original organ accompaniment with words Sung Performance of the original setting with words Original instrumental setting - Central Methodist Church York Organ Original setting piano single verse from Singing the Faith Choral Anthem Setting - Malcolm Archer OUP
The depth of interstellar space,
the ultimate beyond,
the cosmic span of all that is
with Christ the common bond:
Word before world’s had come to be,
our common source and ground,
we stare into this starlit void,
that stellar craft will sound.
We fashion answers, look with awe,
and seek to understand
our place within this finite time,
this time in which we stand;
countless millennia plot the course
down to the present day,
but who can chance or even guess
what more may come in play?
Through this continuum of time
we surf on history’s wave,
we long for answers, never found,
that generations crave.
When will we settle trusting still
that peace is found through grace,
while all is relative in life –
and can love fill this place?
Andrew Pratt 5/11/2019
News that Voyager spacecraft launched in 1977 had left the Solar System and are ‘exploring the outer reaches of our cosmic neighbourhood ‘. BBC News November 4th 2019 – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-50289353 accessed 5/1/2019
Words © 2019 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.stainer.co.uk.
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Tune: CHRISTMAS CAROL (Henry Walford Davies) Available at https://hymnary.org/tune/christmas_carol_davies;