New England

To welcome the season of Advent and prepare for Christmas, New England students, friends, faculty, and their families filled Our Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel on December 2. There, the Thomas Aquinas College Choir and the Aquinas Vocal Ensemble filled the building with jubilant harmony and melody for the fourth annual celebration of Advent Lessons and Carols.

“In a way, Lessons and Carols is a treasury of Western civilization and an exposition of the treasuries of the Catholic Church,” said Head Chaplain Rev. Greg Markey, who instituted the tradition during the New England campus’ first year in 2019. Directed by Stephen Grimm (’75), the service consisted of nine Scripture readings from the prophets and the Gospels that commemorate the birth of Christ, the promise of the Messiah, and love of Our Lady. Complementing these fervent passages were hymns and choral encomium from soloists of the College Choir.

After the congregants contemplated the coming of the Messiah through the musical reflections and the readings, they welcomed His real presence in the exposition and benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. “It was so nice to remember that Christ is coming,” said Trinity Duggan (’24). “My favorite part was when the choir was singing ‘Adeste Fideles,’ and the Blessed Sacrament was exposed, the climax of Lessons and Carols.”