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A Presentation of Nine Lessons and Carols

Annual Christmas concert fills hearts with prayer and Christmas joy.

by Maggie Doyle

On December 7, the Annual Christmas Concert brought the Sacred Heart Major Seminary family together, including current students, faculty, and alumni.

The wintery evening began with a Christmas social hosted by the Alumni Association of the Heart, featuring cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and excited reunions between old friends.

As the guests gathered in the main chapel, President and Rector Msgr. Todd Lajiness welcomed them with a reflection on the truth and beauty conveyed through the Nine Lessons and Carols.

“During the Advent season, it’s a wonderful opportunity to pray our way through this season of expectation. And that’s what this concert is tonight. It’s not just a performance but it really is a prayer. It’s reflecting upon the great mysteries that are part of the richness of our faith.”

by Maggie Doyle

Originating in England in the late 1800s, “Nine Lessons and Carols” is a collection of carefully chosen Biblical passages, woven together with Christmas carols, hymns, and choir music. Many Christian churches continue this Christmas tradition to this day.

The Sacred Heart Choir Concert Chorale and the Michigan Sinfonietta Orchestra’s presentation of Nine Lessons and Carols was incredibly powerful, creating a profound atmosphere of both contemplation and praise.

This year’s reflective, joyous celebration anticipating the birth of Christ marked the first year of the concert under new Music Director, Stephanie Nofar-Kelly. Her arrangement of the program invited the audience to enter deeper into the scripture readings and prayers.

The Sacred Heart Seminary Hispanic Choir’s rendition of Duermete, Ya, translated and arranged by Director Rubi Martinez-Bernat, was especially moving, and solo performances from James Bird, trumpet; Christian Flagstadt, organ; Brandon Yanni, organ; and Kevin Zaporski, cello, were standout moments. Msgr. Lajiness closed with special thanks to the individuals and organizations who made the beautiful evening possible, and recognition of the palatable presence of Lord that was felt throughout the concert.

Maggie Doyle

Maggie is a freelance writer and editor based in Omaha, Nebraska, passionate about sharing stories that captivate.

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Sacred Heart Major Seminary is a Christ-centered Catholic community of faith and higher learning committed to forming leaders who will proclaim the good news of Christ to the people of our time. As a leading center of the New Evangelization, Sacred Heart serves the needs of the Archdiocese of Detroit and contributes to the mission of the universal Church.