Merry Christmas, everybody!
The photo above was not taken today — it’s from Christmas 2009, which was our most recent white Christmas, if I remember correctly. Today is warm and sunny; yesterday was warm and rainy — not Christmas-like at all.
We’ll celebrate the day with the opening of the incomparable Christmas Oratorio by Johann Sebastian Bach, BWV 248, the first movement of Part I “For the First Day of Christmas”, as performed by the Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists, conducted by Sir John Eliot Gardiner:
Jauchzet, frohlocket, auf, preiset die Tage,
Rühmet, was heute der Höchste getan!
Lasset das Zagen, verbannet die Klage,
Stimmet voll Jauchzen und Fröhlichkeit an!
Dienet dem Höchsten mit herrlichen Chören,
Laßt uns den Namen des Herrschers verehren!
Exult! Rejoice! Awake! Glorify the days!
Praise what the All Highest today has done!
Set aside fear, banish lamentation,
Swell with full joy and merriment!
Serve the All Highest with glorious song,
Let us worship the name of the Lord!
The full Oratorio (2:22:10), performed by the same ensemble, is available here.