Sunday, December 23, 2012

Advent Day Twenty-Two: heavenly peace


Silent Night


Silent night! Holy night!
All is calm, all is bright 
Round yon virgin mother and child,
Holy Infant so tender and mild. 
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night! Holy night!
 Shepherds quake at the sight:
 Glories stream from heaven afar;
Heavenly hosts sing, "Hallelujah!
Christ the Saviour is born! 
 Christ the Saviour is born!"

Silent night! Holy night!  
Son of God, love's pure light 
 Radiant beams from thy holy face  
With the dawn of redeeming grace.
 Jesus, Lord at Thy birth,
 Jesus, Lord at Thy birth.

***
The traditional legend about this carol's origin is that the organ in the German town where Father Joseph Mohr was priest had broken down (possibly chewed by mice); Mohr gave his poem "Stille Nacht" to organist Franz Gruber, who wrote guitar music for it so that it could be sung on Christmas night even though the organ did not work.

This legend's truth is debatable, but what does seem to be true is the story of how German and British soldiers in World War I created unofficial truces on the front lines on Christmas Night, 1914, playing football games, trading candy and souvenirs, and singing carols -- one of which was "Silent Night."  Perhaps the tune and gentle words of a song that had meaning to both the Germans and the English touched the hearts of the soldiers.  And perhaps this event was a small reminder of how God's heavenly peace can actually become peace on earth.



2 comments:

  1. Peace on earth as it is in heaven, if you don't mind me mixing a couple different Bible passages Jeannie.

    Tim

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those are 2 good ones to mix!

      Jeannie

      Delete

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