The Word of God Became Flesh
Communion Antiphon for Christmas (2011)
for SATB Choir, Cantor, Assembly, and Organ/Piano
with optional String Quartet
premiered Christmas 2011
Saratoga Springs, NY
Communion Antiphon for Christmas Eve/Day
Antiphon makes use of well-known tune CAROL
Verses from Psalm 98
About The Word of God Became Flesh:
The Word of God Became Flesh (2011) is a setting of the Communion Antiphon for Christmas. The text of the Antiphon is taken from John 1:14, and the verses are from Psalm 98 (Revised Grail translation). My goal with this piece was to create a way to sing these appointed Communion Antiphon texts at Mass in a way that still captures the festivity of the holiday and allows the Assembly (many of whom may be unfamiliar with Catholic liturgy) to participate in song. To this end, I employed the use of the familiar Christmas tune CAROL (aka, "It Came upon the Midnight Clear") to set the Antiphon text, and composed completely new but complimentary music for the verses. The Antiphon is arranged for SATB Choir with the Assembly, and the verses are intended for a Cantor. Organ (or Piano) with optional String Quartet accompany the piece throughout. The tempo of the piece is slow but deliberate, the Antiphon is designed to be sung twice through each time, and there are six verses for the Cantor, all of which enable he piece to accompany the often lengthy Christmas Communion procession while keeping the Assembly engaged in song. While the Choir will not need much rehearsal on the Antiphon, the Cantor should spend time reviewing the variations in how the verse text setting changes slightly from verse to verse. This piece makes lovely and practical addition to any parish's liturgical Christmas repertoire.
Click on the title page image above to view a sample score.