Great “O” Antiphons – O Orien – Dec. 22nd

O-Antiphons-Slide44For December 22nd the key words are O Orien (Dayspring) in the 12th C. devotions known as the Great “O” Antiphons.   The hymn for today is Wake, Awake, the Night is Dying (Anglican translation is Awake, the Night is Flying), sung by Mr. Jared Haselbarth.  You can access all his beautiful Christian music at

This series will be followed by the AIC video Lessons and Carols for Christmas Eve and, beginning Dec. 25th, The Twelve Days of Christmas.  These and other AIC teachings and worship programs are linked from the Digital Library page.

Watch the Video.     Listen to the Podcast.


Great “O” Antiphons – O Clavis David – Dec. 21st

O-Antiphons-Slide31The Great “O” Antiphon for December 21st is O Clavis David (Key of David).  This evocation from our joint Hebrew-Christian past is part of the 12th C. celebration of the last 7 days of Advent,  The hymn for the occasion is Come, Thou Long-expected Jesus, sung by soloist Jared Haselbarth.  The hymn was composed by Charles Wesley and is sung to the German-inspired tune, Stuttgart.  You can access much of Mr. Haselbarth’s Christian music at

The Great “O” Antiphons seasonal video series offers not only stirring music, including a wonderful, evocative Celtic-inspired playing of O Come, O Come Emmanuel, but also graphic images from the rich artistic tradition of Christianity.  Other episodes in the series are linked from the Digital Library page.

Watch the video.     Listen to the Podcast.


Great “O” Antiphons – O Radix Jesse – Dec. 20th

O-Antiphons-Slide23The key phrase for Dec. 20th in the 12th C. observation, The Great “O” Antiphons, is O Radix Jesse, or Key of Jesse.  It’s such a shame that the modern Church rarely uses these great teaching assets, but you can still enjoy and, hopefully, learn from them here.

Today’s hymn is Hear the Herald Voice Resounding, a Latin hymn from the 6th C. The Anglican version is Hark! A Thrilling Voice Is Sounding, an 1849 A.D. translation set to the tune Merton by W. H. Monk).  It is performed by Jared Haselbarth.  You can find this and other music by him at

The series was originally recorded in 2014 A.D. and revised with Jared Haselbarth’s great and uplifting solos and other modifications in 2015 A.D.  This program and other resources for traditional worship are available from the Digital Library page.

Watch the Video.        Listen to the Podcast.


Great “O” Antiphons – O Adonai – Dec. 19th

O-Antiphons-Slide12The key word for December 19th is Adonai, the Hebrew word for Lord, for which the Latin and Greek equivalent is Kyrie.  This is the second of seven presentations leading up to Christmas Eve based on the 12th C. celebration of the Roman Catholic Church augmented with pictures, music and Scripture readings.   It was recorded in 2015 A.D.

The hymn for today’s presentation is The King of Glory Comes, written by Willard Francis Jabusch in 1966 A.D.  Here it is sung by Mr. Jared Haselbarth, whose music is available at  The hymn is arranged to a Hebrew folk tune to which Fr. Jabusch set wonderful Christian lyrics.    I hope you like it.

Tomorrow’s key words will be O Radix Jesse (Root of Jesse).

Watch the video      Listen to the Podcast version.


Great “O” Antiphons – O Sapienta – Dec. 18th


Today is December 18th, the first day of the seven-day cycle of The Great “O” Antiphons, which date from the Roman Catholic Church in the 12th Century.

Today’s key word is O Sapienta, Latin for wisdom.  Episodes in the series run approximately 12 minutes each.  Both video and podcast versions are available.  Includes appropriate Scripture and music.  On this episode, On Jordan’s Bank the Baptist’s Cry is sung by Mr. Jared Haselbarth.  His music is also available at  The song was written by Charles Coffin in 1736 A.D. and is still sung world-wide during Advent (as it was on Advent 3 at the Anglican Church I attended yesterday).  This version was recorded in 2015 A.D.

Watch the Video.      Listen to the Podcast

Merry Christmas

ShibleyTree2017What a busy week!  Phone conversations and site visits with clients, in town and out of town, and meeting with a potential singer/chanter for The War on Christianity series Episode Six and Episode Seven.  Plus putting up the family Christmas tree after Church on Sunday – and then nearly all day Monday as well.  But it was truly worth it on all fronts!

The tree is exactly 8′ tall, with the angel touching the ceiling.  There are approximately 1,000 small lights plus 4 strings of the old-fashioned bubble lights (which are what makes the all white blobs in the picture at left.  Imagine the white glowing blobs as yellow at the top with a red or yellow base.

There are probably an equal number of decorations, ranging from egg carton ornaments my mother, my brother and I made in childhood, plus several more made in the same style made by Corkie, Christopher and Laurie and by me, all hand-painted in gold or silver.  The oldest ornament is a tea pot my mother left me which had belonged to her grandmother.  There are painted ornaments from the 1940s, plastic musical instruments, cloth ornaments made for Christopher and Laurie with the year indicated, many ShinyBrite brand ornaments my mother and father bought (and we still have many of the cartons) from W.T. Grant or J. J. Newberry (both chains long gone) in the 1950s.  The angel on top is Corkie’s work.  There are four Department 51 brand ceramic Santa Clauses which fit over light bulbs.  There’s also a plastic drum-shaped ornament with an alumimun-bladed fan in the middle which moves as the heat from the lights increases.

The tree (bought from Costco just after Thanksgiving) doesn’t go up until mid-December because we celebrate Christmas in the old-fashioned way, honoring the Twelve Days of Christmas, which ends on the eve of Epiphany.  We leave both the tree and the exterior decoration up or on until Jan. 6th.  I’m the lighting person.  Corkie and I hang ornaments together, usually a two-day process.  When the children were little they too played a part in hanging the ornaments – and eating cookies, which Cookie made by the dozens.  The grandmother clock in the right background is a new feature for 2017.  Corkie bought it for $1 at a Church yard sale this Spring.  We had a clock specialist come in, tune it up and getting it going.  I plays 4, 8, 12 or 16 notes on the appropriate quarter hour, plus the hours chimes (Westminster tune) after the 16 notes at the top of the hour.  Many other Christmas-related art has been hung since the picture was taken earlier this week.

Christ Pantokrator, 13th C. Byzantine-style fresco, Basilica of St. Ambrose, Milan, with Archangels Michael (left) and Gabriel (right). Image copyright Can Stock Photo, Inc./Tupungato.  Perspective correction applied.

The slides for Episode Six in The War on Christianity are complete.  My friend Wayne Pask, a retired Lutheran minister, has agreed to chant the Te Deum Laudamus, which is the subject of both Episode Six and Episode Seven.  Part One is sung and discussed, line by line, in Episode Six, with Parts Two and Three being the focus for Episode Seven.   The Te Deum Laudamus was chosen as the best example of what I call The First Line of Defense in the War on Christianity:  understanding the teachings of the Church.   Both episodes are illustrated with historic art and quotations from either Scripture or Liturgy.

I invite readers to watch or listen to the installments of The Great “O” Antiphons series, which are archived on the Digital Library page.

Visit the Digital Library page for the videos.  Or the Podcast Archive page for the Podcast versions.

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May God bless you in all that you do in His Name!  Amen

Glory be to God for all things.  Amen!