Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The Sounds of The Season

by Leigh

Merry Christmas Eve!

One of my favorite things about this time of year are the songs of the season.  I hear "What Child Is This" and I'm transported back to the church sanctuary with candles surrounded by fresh greenery flickering in the transept windows softly illuminating the stained glass windows.  Beautiful red and green poinsettias line the steps below the altar as the acolyte makes her way up to light each of the four advent candles and then finally lighting the Christ candle in the middle.  The soloist sings a beautiful acapella version of "Mary Did You Know" as he walks up the middle aisle of the church.  I'm sitting there with my mom and dad, my grandmother and grandfather and my sister.  As excited as I am about the dinner that waits for us at home (especially my favorite custard that my grandmother makes only for Christmas Eve) and of course all those beautifully wrapped presents under the tree just waiting to be opened….I find myself reveling in the sounds of the season.  

As the service comes to a close the few lights that were still on are dimmed even more.  I watch intently as the minister uses his candle to light the candle of a congregation member sitting in the first row. My eyes are filled with wonder as that flame is passed from person to person and the light continues to grow and becomes brighter and brighter until it reaches me and my grandfather carefully leans over and lights my candle.  The church is aglow with hundreds of people holding candles as we all sing "Silent Night".  Recounting this story for you now I can't help but become emotional.  It's such a beautiful light filled moment that I look forward to each and every year.  And now as we take our children to my same childhood church for the Christmas Eve candlelight service tonight I will see in their faces the same look of wonder that was in my eyes at their age.  I hope that this becomes a memory that they will hold on to also when they enjoy the sounds of the season.


heyjudephotography said...

Beautiful Leigh. This brought tears to my eyes. We look forward to our Christmas Eve candlelight mass each year too. Merry Christmas!

Dotti said...

This mirrors our own long-standing Christmas Eve tradition. Imagine my joy a few years ago when my daughter told me this was her very favorite family tradition. We'll all be going to the early service this evening then home for Christmas Eve Tea. I'll be thinking about you doing much the same in OKC. Merry Christmas, Leigh! xo

Kim Stevens said...

It's about all I can do usually, to keep from going into a soft sob. Our tradition is to go to the last service at 11:00 tonight - there is nothing better than the sight of hundreds upon hundreds of candles being lit, one by one until the entire church is glowing!! Merry Christmas one and all!

Carol said...

I love it too and it brings nack such memories! This picture is just gorgeous Leigh! Merry Christmas everyone!

jennifer matthews said...

Beautiful photo and story ... Merry Christmas everyone and all the best in 2015

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