Begin Advent season with inclusive lyrics to familiar Christmas carol tunes you love. Sing Advent and Christmas songs with lyrics that include female names and images of the Divine to celebrate the sacredness of all people and all creation. Sing of peace for all people and for the earth.
Sing of peace through the coming of Christ-Sophia.
O come, Christ-Sophia, full of grace and wisdom;
come bless us, come challenge us to make life anew.
Come bring us power, beauty, hope, and harmony.
We long for your coming, labor for your birthing,
for you are our hope of peace, our power for change.
Come Christ-Sophia, break down walls and free us.
Rejoice all you people, sisters, brothers, join now
to sing of a bright new day just dawning for all.
Sing now a new song, sing with jubilation.
O come now, Christ-Sophia, O come now, Christ-Sophia,
O come now, Christ-Sophia, wisdom and peace.
Words © Jann Aldredge-Clanton ADESTE FIDELES
It’s been a joy to collaborate on “O Come, Christ-Sophia” and other inclusive Christmas carols with a splendid music group from Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran in San Francisco. Alison Kohler-Newvine, Dionne Kohler-Newvine, Kathleen Neville Fritz, Lana Dalberg, and I had a wonderful time creating a Christmas album, Sing of Peace.
Here is an excerpt from a piece by Kathleen Neville Fritz about this new inclusive Christmas music:
The holidays are wonderful… but do you ever get just a little tired of the same old Christmas carols, endlessly reworked and replayed all over the radio during December? If you’re like us, you might cringe occasionally at yet another manufactured, trying-too-hard rendition of Jingle Bells or Let It Snow.
It often feels as if the music of Christmas has lost its soul.
Personally, some of my fondest memories of the holiday season are singing Christmas carols around the tree with family. But now, as an adult, I am painfully aware of the exclusively masculine language for God that runs through these time-honored songs. Each year, each generation that we sing them further calcifies these patterns of naming the Divine.
What if we began naming the Solstice, the time when Jesus’ birth is celebrated as the return of light in the darkness – as the moment when Wisdom comes into the world to dwell among us?
Wisdom – Hokmah in Hebrew, Sophia in Greek – is a feminine name for the Divine found in the Hebrew Scriptures. The figure of Wisdom represents God/dess’ immanent presence within creation, shaping and sustaining the world, delighting in Her people and filling us with Her insight and love. And it is precisely the Jewish tradition of Wisdom that shaped Christian ideas of the Incarnation of the “Word of God” in Jesus! In other words, Jesus is Wisdom, Sophia made flesh.
And in remembering the birth of the “Christ-Sophia,” what we celebrate is not a male human king come to establish the dominant rule of a male God over the world, but the birthing of Wisdom Herself into human lives and hearts, everywhere and in every age.
By singing of the birth of Wisdom, we welcome Her coming to transform our world with Her peace and justice and love.
“Sing of Peace brings together Christmas songs that combine words of inclusion and justice with familiar and dear Christmas tunes,” writes Lutheran theologian Dr. Caryn D. Riswold in her Patheos blog.
Join together now to sing new songs—songs that include female and male and more, songs that bring fresh hope and healing to our world. Join together to transform our world through singing inclusive songs that give birth to peace and justice and love.