Based on a 120-year-old sequence mixing the intimate with the exalted and the meditative with the exultant, St. Andrew's service will start at 4 p.m. — just in time for December's soft, gray dusk — with a treble soloist leading a procession of choristers who sing the haunting "Once in Royal David's City." Among other carols in the service, the junior choir will perform Handel's glorious "Come, Jesus, Holy Son of God," the bell choir will perform the mysterious "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel," and everyone together will perform Vaughan Williams's marvelous "Sussex Carol."
When so many churches in Ann Arbor today seem to be scaling back on sacred music programs, it's good to know that St. Andrew's remembers the real meaning of Christmas. First Baptist and First Presbyterian, which present their Lessons and Carols on Christmas Eve, are in this exemplary company too.
[Review published December 2006]