It’s a song of anticipation. A song born out of years of longing and yearning for the Promised One, the Messiah.
A song with the melody of a Gregorian chant and the celebrative chorus of angels.
O Come O Come Emmanuel ‘s author is unknown, but it was supposedly written in Latin in the 12 century and translated into English by John Mason Neale in 1851.
You can hear Casting Crown’s version here.
Which authors said that this carol was their FAVORITE Christmas song?
My favorite Christmas carol is O Come, O Come Emmanuel. I have always loved that one. Aaron Shust sings it sooooooo well. I think I like it partly because it just sounds so cool. And because it sounds very medieval. So when I was writing The Merchant’s Daughter and I needed a song for them sing at church, I looked up O Come, O Come Emmanuel and it was written a hundred years before my story, so I used it. It plays into two scenes in the book. It was perfect.
Melanie Dickerson (author of The Healer’s Apprentice and the newly released Merchant’s Daughter)
Growing up, my parents had an album The Glorious Sounds of Christmas. One of the songs was “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” and the orchestration with the cellos and violins was just soooo soulful and moving, it gripped my heart and imagination every time. I could just see the Israelits traversing across the plains, searching for the promised on.
It’s still one of my favorite songs. I have the original album loaded in my iTunes!
Rachel Hauck (author of Dining With Joy and The Wedding Dress)
My favorite Christmas song is “Oh Come, Oh Come Emmanuel.” When I was growing up my church did a live nativity scene every year. This song was always a part of the show. There’s something about the melody of that hymn that haunts my soul (in a good way). To think that Christ was prophesied so long before he came as a babe in a manger boggles my mind. I can just hear the cries of the Jews, “Oh come, oh come Emmanuel!” as they cried out to be set free from bondage and captivity. In so many ways people are still held “captive” today (by the things of this world). Like those Jews of old, they can cry out, “Oh come, oh come Emmanuel” (God with us) and Jesus will come into their hearts, set them free and release them from the pain of the past. It’s hard to control my emotions whenever that song plays. The words in the chorus: “Rejoice! Rejoice!” transition the song from the bleakness of the mourner’s past to the joy of a life with God.
Janice Thompson ( author of Weddings by Bella series and When Stars Collide)
My all-time favorite is O Come, O Come Emmanuel. The reason I like it doesn’t really have as much to do with the words as with the feeling and the mood of the song. It’s one of the few Christmas songs written in a minor key and it feels ancient. It’s very elemental and it reflects Christmas exactly the way I feel it. I spent some years in Canada as I was growing up and winter isn’t all glistening snow with merry blue skies. At least not to me. Winter is cold and treacherous and primitive; isolating and brittle, occasionally warmed by gatherings with family and friends. This Christmas carol could be the soundtrack to the painting ‘Hunters in the Snow’ by Bruegel: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pieter_Bruegel_d._%C3%84._106b.jpg My favorite song, my favorite painting. They both evoke very strong moods and feelings. It makes sense that I would like them: I try to evoke moods and feelings with my writing too.
Siri Mitchell (author of She Walks in Beauty and A Heart Most Worthy) – and of course, her answer is as poetic as her books 😉
Find out more Song of Christmas with your favorite authors coming later this week, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.