Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Past Three O'Clock, On A Cold and Frosty Morning....

Merry Christmas to us, one and all!

Most years around Christmas, I start a series of posts about various Advent and Twelve Days of Christmas customs. This year, I have mostly neglected my poor blog, however, I sort of intend to make up for it by posting lesser known Christmas songs for each day of the season of Christmas. They are songs that I like particularly, and are usually songs that made an impression on me the first time I heard them. Today, being Christmas, I am going to post two songs which have very little in common, but both are singularly joyous feeling of both:

My family likes to attend Midnight Mass whenever possible, and the nearest Latin Mass for us often involves a 2 hour drive down the mountains and foothills, and into the city. We'd leave at about 9:30 in the evening to get there in time, and we would seldom get home before 4:00 in the morning. I have an old, and much loved tape of Christmas music, ranging from Medieval carols, sung by choirs, to traditional old songs, played on fiddles and bagpipes. I always listened to that tape during the drive, and as often as not, as we left the city and began to climb into the mountains, this song would cycle through... and there are few things more beautiful than driving in the cold, pure winter night, beneath a black velvet sky, thick with stars that glitter with unbelievable brilliance upon the heaped up snows. And if this song is making a soundtrack to the drive, so much the better. It could just be that the wee sma' hours of the morning turn the most prosaic of us into poets, but those early morning drives, shot through with the lingering benediction of Midnight Mass seem to have a touch of heaven itself to them.

And I would often listen to this one too. It is not so beautiful as the first, but it reminds me rather of the way we celebrate Christmas - Mass and feasting, the very essence of a proper Christmas celebration:

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