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O Come, All Ye Faithful

- arr. Angela Birkhead-Flight


PDF Sample

Use: Christmastide
Required Resources: SATB choir, trumpet, organ
Language: English & Latin

Adeste fideles is a Latin poem of unknown origin, attributed variously to Saint Bonaventure or King John IV of Portugal in the 13th century; or perhaps it was written later, along with the music to which it is commonly sung. The music was penned in 1751 for the hymnal Cantus Diversi by John Francis Wade, an 18th century Catholic hymnist who fled from England to France to avoid persecution. While the common English translation is, "O Come, All Ye Faithful," the hymn has become popular throughout the world. The familiar Christmas tune is now called Adeste fideles, taking its name from the Latin words with which it was originally associated.

Puer natus est nobis is the proper Gregorian chant Introit for Christmas Mass during the Day. The text translates: "A child is born to us; a son is given to us. Upon his shoulder dominion rests and his name shall be called the Angel of Great Counsel."

These two examples of great Catholic music are expertly combined in this carol setting for SATB choir, congregation, trumpet and organ. The Gregorian chant is heard in the introduction and first interlude. There are three verses of the carol set for congregation; all sing verse 1 in unison, the choir adds harmony to the congregation in verse 2, and in verse 3 the sopranos add a descant drawn from the chant melody. In addition to playing during the introduction and interludes, the trumpet has its own descants on verses 1 and 3.

How wonderful would it be to sing the entire Introit Puer natus est nobis either before Christmas Mass, or at the beginning of the procession, followed by the three verses of this setting, which directly quotes the chant!


Order #: 4301
Price: $2.10


- Choral Music
- Christmas
- Hymns and Carols
- SATB Choir
- Instruments
- English / Latin

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