The Season of Advent – Music – 56.1

These music suggestions are appropriate for use throughout the Season of Advent and may be repeated from week to week.

Candle Litanies

These candle litanies work well after the Declaration of Forgiveness or Passing of the Peace. After each litany, you may choose to sing one stanza of GTG 103, “Come Now, O Prince of Peace.”

Advent 1

The world says, “All is lost.”
God says, “All is loved.”
The darkness says, “The light is dying.”
The light says, “The fire is catching.”
Fear says, “Cover your eyes and your ears.”
Hope says, “Wait, watch, and listen.”

As we light our first Advent candle,
we pray for holy hope of God.
Come now, O Child of Mary.
Come now, O Prince of Hope.

Advent 2

A voice cries out in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord.”
A choir sings in the silence,
“Come, Emmanuel.”
Every valley shall be filled.
Every heart shall be made whole,
for peace is stronger than turmoil,
and love is louder than hate.

As we light our second Advent candle,
we pray for the holy peace of God.
Come now, O Child of Mary.
Come now, O Prince of Peace.

Advent 3

“Rejoice in the Lord always;
again I will say, Rejoice.”
The world says, “Worry,”
and we say, “Rejoice.”
The news says, “Fear,”
and we say, “Rejoice.”
The world says, “Be happy,”
and the church says, “Be faithful.”

As we light our third Advent candle,
We pray for hope, peace, and joy.
Come now, O child of Mary.
Come now, O Prince of Joy.

Advent 4

Isaiah spoke to a people called chosen,
to a tribe called Israel, with a light of hope.
Gabriel came to a town called Nazareth,
to a girl called Mary, with a light of joy.
Mary went to a place called Bethlehem,
to a stable called a nursery,
with a light of love.

As we light our fourth Advent candle,
we rejoice with Mary, for Love has flesh.
Come now, O Child of Mary.
Come now, O Prince of Love.

Christmas Eve

“Good news of great joy,”
the angel said,
“for to you a savior is born.”
“Peace on earth,”
the choir sang,
“for God reigns in the highest.”
“Follow me,”
the star beckoned,
“For Hope was born in Bethlehem.”

As we light the Christ candle,
we watch for the Christmas story around us.
Emmanuel has come and is coming.
Come, all ye faithful, and worship God.

Congregational Song in Advent

A change in liturgical seasons creates opportunities for congregational responses unique to the season as well as experiences of ongoing liturgical moments and responses set to new and different music. Following are suggestions for use during the season of Advent.

Lighting of the Advent Wreath

  • Come, Come Emmanuel GTG 91
  • Light One Candle to Watch for Messiah GTG 85
  • For You, O Lord, My Soul in Stillness Waits (ref.) GTG 89
  • Wait fo the Lord (refrain) GTG 90
  • Prepare the Way of the Lord GTG 95

Alternate to the Gloria Patri

  • Glory to God (Gloria, gloria) GTG 583; PH 576
  • Glory, Glory, Glory GTG 584
  • Angels We Have Heard on High (refrain) GTG 113; PH 23

Sung Call to Confession

  • Come Now, O Prince of Peace (verse 3) GTG 103
  • Comfort, Comfort Now My People (verse 1) GTG 87; PH 3
  • For You, O Lord, My Soul in Stillness Waits (v. 1) GTG 89
  • On Jordan’s Bank the Baptist’s Cry (verse 2) GTG 96; PH 10

Sung Response to Forgiveness

  • Awake! Awake, and Greet the New Morn (v. 4) GTG 107
  • We Are Forgiven GTG 447


Anthems for Children’s Choirs in Advent

  • “A Little Child Shall Lead Them,” Marilyn Biery, AF, uni, org, vln or ob (ME)
  • “Carol of Prophecy,” Shirley McRae, CGA, uni, hb (E)
  • “Dance and Sing for the Lord Will Be with Us,” Hal Hopson, CGA, uni/2 pt, pno, tamb (E*MA)
  • “Emmanuel,” Peter Johns, CGA, uni/2 pt, pno or gtr (E*M)
  • “Prepare the Way of the Lord,” Michael Bedford, CGA, uni/2 pt, pno, fl (E*M)
  • “Let Us Go to the House of the Lord,” Ellen McClune and Stephen Taranto, CGA, uni, pno (E)
  • “There Was Love,” Mark Burrows, CGA, uni, pno, fl (E)
  • “Walk in the Light,” André Thomas, CGA, uni, pno (E)
  • “We Wait for a Little Child,” Kathy Lowe Hart, AF, uni/2 pt, pno (E*A)
  • “Will You Be Ready,” Mark Patterson, CGA, uni/2 pt, pno (E*ME)
  • “With the Help of the Spirit of the Lord,” Jayne Southwick Cool, CGA, uni/2 pt, pno (E*ME)

Anthems for Youth Choirs in Advent

  • “The Wexford Carol,” Victor Johnson, CGA, 3 pt mx, pno (ME)
  • “Huron Carol,” Mark Burrows, CGA, 3 pt mx, pno (M)
  • “Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus,” Mark Miller, CGA, 3 pt mx, pno (ME)
  • “Call to Advent,” J. Jerome Williams, HOPE, 2 pt mx, acap (E)

Piano Music in Advent

  • “Awake, Awake and Greet the New Morn,” REJOICE, REJOICE, Greet the New Morn: Piano Music for Advent and Christmas, Rachel Chapin, CON (ME)
  • “Blest Be the God of Israel,” FOREST GREEN, Twelve Hymn Contemplations for Piano, Set 4, Keith Kolander, Marquee Publishing (ME)
  • “Comfort, Comfort Now My People,” FREU DICH SEHR, Piano Reflections on Advent Tunes, Anne Krentz Organ, AF (ME)
  • “Emmanuel,” VENI EMMANUEL, Colours 2: Music for Solo Piano, Chris de Silva, GIA (M)
  • “Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence,” PICARDY, Merrily on High: A Christmas Piano Collection, John Carter, AF (ME)
  • “My Lord, What a Morning,” BURLEIGH, Fairest Lord Jesus, Michael Larkin, MSM (ME)
  • “Prepare the Royal Highway,” BEREDEN VÄG FÖR HERRAN, Nativity Scenes: 12 Carols for Piano, Timothy Shaw, MSM (ME)
  • “Soon and Very Soon,” VERY SOON, Piano Impressions II for Worship, Marianne Kim, HOPE (MA)
  • “The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came,” GABRIEL’S MESSAGE, The Essential Collection for Christmas, Larry Shackley, HOPE (M)
  • “The King Shall Come When Morning Dawns,” MORNING SONG, MOTHERLESS CHILD, The Quiet Center: Piano Music for Advent and Christmas, Thomas Keesecker, MSM (ME)

Vocal Solos in Advent

  • “The Lamb,” First Book of Mezzo-Soprano/Alto Solos, Theodore Chanler, HAL (ME)
  • “Magnificat,” The Nativity according to St. Luke, Randall Thompson, ECS (MA)
  • “A Simple Song,” MASS, Leonard Bernstein, BH (A)
  • “A Stable Lamp is Lighted,” David Hurd, GIA (E)
  • “For behold darkness shall cover the earth . . . The people that walked in darkness,” Messiah, G. F. Handel (A)
  • “My Lord, What a Morning,” The Spirituals of Harry T. Burleigh, Harry T. Burleigh, HAL (M)
  • “Every Valley,” Sacred Songs of John Ness Beck, John Ness Beck, BP (E)