History of the Sacred Carol:
From Ring Dance to Christmas Carol
James Sundquist, guitarist, composer, and hymnologist
has written a wonderful documentary on the history and meaning of the Christmas
carol. This documentary was first aired on National Public Radio, and we are proud
to make the production available here as narrated by Robert Montiegel.
And she gave birth to her firstborn son, and wrapped
him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was
no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds
out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel
of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone around about
them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them,
"Fear not! For, behold, I bring you good news of great joy, which
will come to all people. For to you is born this day in the city of David
a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign for you:
You will find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger."
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God, and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth
peace among all people."
If you want to talk with someone in person, please feel free to call 212-864-5436
The Rev. Charles P. Henderson is a Presbyterian minister and
Executive Director of CrossCurrents.
He is the author of God and Science (John Knox Press, 1986).
A revised and expanded version of the book is appearing here. God and Science (Hypertext Edition,
He is also editor of a new book, featuring articles by world class scientists and theologians, and illustrating the leading views on the relationship between science and religion: Faith, Science and the Future (CrossCurrents Press, 2007).
Charles also tracks the boundry between the virtual and the real at his blog: Next World Design, focusing on the mediation of art, science and spirituality in the metaverse.