This year on December 3rd at 4pm, The Parish of Calvary-St. George’s will host our New York City tradition: A Candlelight Service of Lessons and Carols. The historic St. George’s Church on Stuyvesant Square will once again be the magnificent setting for this service and a gift to our city. St. George’s is a New York City landmark and is also on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and has, for years, stood as a witness to both mission and service in our city. St. George’s tradition of congregational carol singing began in the 19th century, when The Reverend Dr. William S. Rainsford established a Christmas festival in our community.
Many linguists believe the word “carol” derives from the Greek “Kyrie Eleison” (Lord have mercy upon us). Candlelight through lessons & carols gives us a chance to recall the merciful acts of God and reorient our lives to that mercy working through us, loving others as he has loved all of us.
This service will begin at 4:00 p.m., with a prelude at 3:40 p.m. This year we will unveil the newly renovated clock towers and incorporate the new Clarion Chimes into the actual service.
Among the highlights this year: a new choral work sung in Coptic (one of the historic languages of Christians in the Middle East) composed by Kamel Boutros, choral works by the highly acclaimed Norwegian choral composer Ola Gjeilo, and as always, a chance to sing your favorite Christmas carols.