Auburn Westminster Presbyterian Church in Auburn will celebrate "The Service of Nine Lessons and Carols" at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 30. The service tells the Christmas story, from prophecy to incarnation, through nine readings from the Old and New Testaments, and with hymns, carols, and special music.
The service is adapted from the traditional "Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols," first held on Christmas Eve 1918 at Kings College, Cambridge, whose new dean thought that the Church of England was in need of more imaginative styles of worship. It was adapted from an even older order of worship which had been used by the Archbishop of Canterbury, who arranged a service with nine carols and nine "tiny lessons," read by various church officers on Christmas Eve.
The "Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols" was first broadcast from Kings College in 1928, and was broadcast annually, even during World War II when the ancient glass was removed from the chapel and the name of the location was omitted for security reasons.
Churches in communities worldwide, including Westminster, have adapted the "Nine Lessons and Carols" service for worship during the Christmas season. It is the practice at Westminster to celebrate this service on the first Sunday of Christmas.
Westminster Church is located at 17 William Street, Auburn. For more information, visit westminsterauburn.org.