One of the traditions at Restoration is celebrating Lessons and Carols on the first Sunday after Christmas. This past Sunday, December 27th was that day and it was a wonderful service.
Lessons and Carols is the story of God’s plan for the salvation of humanity as revealed in Scripture and Christmas Carols. That story begins with the Genesis account of the fall of Adam and Eve in the garden. It continues with verses from the Old and New Testament, and concludes with a reading from the first chapter of John reminding us that Jesus is, “the Word made flesh.” Each reading was followed by one or two carols, allowing for further reflection and worship.
This year, Lessons and Carols included the lighting of a candle after each reading. This is what we are calling a “reversed Tenebrae service,” symbolizing Christ, the Light, coming into the world. Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). A Tenebrae service is held during Holy Week on Maundy Thursday. During the service, candles are extinguished after the readings from the gospels about Jesus’ last week of human life and bodily death. Look for some of these same elements to be repeated later in the year as we mark the final days of Jesus earthly life and prepare to celebrate Easter. These two services can be viewed as being bookends to Jesus’ life – from birth to death.
Below are some pictures taken from Lessons and Carols at Resotration.