What's In This Blog

I created this blog for my journal. I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In this blog I keep many of the things I come across as a member of the church. I also share my experiences on the ACE Train and getting to work, my experiences in Manteca where we have lived for three years, and other things I think are noticeable.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Christmas Carols: It Came Upon the Midnight Clear

Please see The Carols We Love: The "Story Behind the Story of Twenty-two Classic Christmas Carols, Daniel Partner, Barbour Publishing, Uhrichsville, OH, 2002.
"It Came Upon the Midnight Clear" was published in 1849 in the Christian register.  It had been written by Edmund Hamilton Sears, a minister in Massachusetts.  It was written in the middle of the American Industrial revolution.  The lyrics to the song reflect those times.  He refers to the world as "weary" and then full of sins and strife.  He then talks of two thousand years of wrong.  However the most damning part is when he seems to refer to the laborer.  "And ye, beneath life's crushing load, Whose forms are bending low, Who toil along the climbing way With painful steps and slow.  I can see this man coming out of a mine with a load of ore, or working in a mill all day, or as a weaver in a hot room.

However the carol concludes with Hope, looking for the Savior to return.
It came upon a midnight clear,
That glorious song of old,
From angels bending near the earth,
To touch their harps of gold:
“Peace on the earth, goodwill to men,
From heaven’s all-gracious King.”
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.
Still through the cloven skies they come,
With peaceful wings unfurled,
And still their heavenly music floats
O’er all the weary world;
Above its sad and lowly plains,
They bend on hovering wing,
And ever o’er its Babel sounds
The bless├Ęd angels sing.
Yet with the woes of sin and strife
The world has suffered long;
Beneath the angel-strain have rolled
Two thousand years of wrong;
And man, at war with man, hears not
The love-song which they bring;
O hush the noise, ye men of strife,
And hear the angels sing.
And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
Whose forms are bending low,
Who toil along the climbing way
With painful steps and slow,
Look now! for glad and golden hours
come swiftly on the wing.
O rest beside the weary road,
And hear the angels sing!
For lo!, the days are hastening on,
By prophet bards foretold,
When with the ever-circling years
Comes round the age of gold
When peace shall over all the earth
Its ancient splendors fling,
And the whole world give back the song
Which now the angels sing.

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