Christ in Christmas

Written by on December 24, 2019

December, for most of us, brings back memories of childhood: the growing thrill of expectation as Christmas approaches, and the joy of exultation as presents are exchanged on the big day. All the customs add to the nostalgia: decorating the Christmas tree, baking Christmas cookies and putting some out with milk for Santa Claus on the night before Christmas, and so many other traditions create an extraordinary sentimental richness associated with this most special of “holidays.”

It is a time that is also filled with the hope of unity, of family coming together to enjoy a time without conflict, in the simple pleasure of being home with each other, to celebrate… to celebrate… but do we remember the point of it all? Sometimes, amidst all the gift-buying, merrymaking, and torn wrapping paper, we can be forgetful of “the reason for the season”: the birth of Our Savior.

With this episode, we encourage putting the religious focus back on the observance of this time of universal celebration.

At the heart of the December episode, with a sense of gratitude we present Russell Campoli’s original Christmas cantata, “Glory, Honor And Praise!” Celebrating the birth of Christ, this recording is a musical gift to the public that is sure to lift hearts and help listeners enter into the joy of the holy days of Christmas. The grand composition comprises nine songs and is a major work of art, a significant contribution to popular as well as Christian culture.

Click above for the video of the live performance heard in this episode, recorded at St. Anthony of Padua in New Bedford, Massachusetts on December 17, 2017.

In this episode, you’ll also hear from contributor Daniel Russo, with a spotlight on St. Nicholas. Then, Jonathan and Fr. Alan talk with cantata composer Russell Campoli about the origin of “Glory, Honor And Praise!”, followed by the Radio Cor Mariae premiere broadcast of the full recording of the one and only public performance (so far) of this hidden gem of contemporary religious culture.

Morassed in the secular grind of daily life, Christians sometimes feel the weight of a culture that is forgetful or even resentful of its Creator. Sometimes without realizing it, Christians begin to forget their own religious identity, stifling religious expression out of a “dutiful” but erroneous sense of “political correctness” (i. e., brainwashing), “going along to get along” with the forced secularism of common society. At Christmas, it can be a little disheartening to see even edifying displays of faith and religious memory contested, Nativity scenes regarded as “oppressive,” and the “Merry Christmas!”salutation as “offensive.” With this episode of Catholic Citizenship, we aim to encourage the faithful to give free range to the joyful Christian spirit: be happy, and holy, and share your joy! Could there be a better time than to give the gift of yourself to your Savior and to your neighbor in love and service, and to help put Christ in Christmas?

To all, the team at Catholic Citizenship and Radio Cor Mariae wish you a joyful encounter with the Holy Family gathered around the Baby Jesus, united in peaceful, Christmas spirit, with family and loved ones. Merry Christmas to all!

For the full episode, click below:

NOTE: You can reach Russell Campoli by email at russellcampoli@comcast.net


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