Christmas Caroling Classics
Colleen Reece's Chapbook Series

Category: Wings of Faith
Author: Colleen L. Reece
eBook ISBN: 9781616338725 1616338725
Paperback ISBN: 9781616338732 1616338733

Nine-year-old Dennis and seven-year-old Sarah love singing Christmas carols. Dennis wants to know where the carols came from and why they are called classics. Mom suggests that the children look up the answer to that question and report on the find in their family worships between then and Christmas. Dennis and Sarah eagerly agree and discover some surprising facts. A preacher who was considered one of the greatest of his time  wrote over 700 hymns and psalms. However, he couldn’t compare with another man who wrote over 6000 hymns! The children’s favorite story is about naughty mice that may well have been the reason for one of the world’s best-loved Christmas hymns.

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Chapter One
about Song - complete-...‘Hark! The Herald Angels Sing’...
“Mom, what does classic mean?” Nine-year-old Dennis scratched his wrinkled-up nose and kept one finger of his other hand in the book he’d been reading.
“Let’s look it up.” Mom smiled and reached for the big dictionary. “How about if you find the word?”
“Oh, Mom.” Dennis reluctantly put a bookmark in his place and reached for the dictionary. “It’s easier when you do it.”
“Yes,” Sarah, his seven-year-old sister echoed. Then she grinned. “But it’s better for us to look things up. Right, Mom?”
“It says ‘something of recognized value, a standard of excellence, enduring.’ ” Dennis stared at the page. “Is that why my book says the Bible is the greatest classic of all?” Before she could answer he added, “It’s everything the dictionary said.”
Mom’s smiling eyes grew serious. “Absolutely. There are also other things we call classics, such as some of the literature written long ago that people still read now.” Her eyes twinkled. “It’s almost Christmas. Can you think of some Christmas classics?”
Dennis and Sarah thought for a long time; then Dennis shouted, “I know! The neat songs we sing every year. They’re really old, and almost everyone knows them and—”
“—and I feel good all over when we sing carols.” Sarah finished his sentence.
Dennis asked, “Mom, where did the carols come from? The ones we always sing?”
“How would you like to look up the answer to that question and report on what you find in our family worships between now and Christmas?”
“All right!” Dennis agreed. He loved to read and use the library at school to look things up.
“If you get stuck and can’t find something you want to know, call Pastor Stuart,” Mom told the children.
That night at family worship, after Dad got home, Dennis proudly reported. “I found out that ‘Hark! the Herald Angels Sing’ is 252 years old.” Everyone looked impressed, and Dennis continued.
“Charles Wesley wrote it. Guess what else?” He grinned. “Charles was John Wesley’s brother. John started the Methodist Church, but Charles wrote over 6,000 hymns! People call him ‘the hymn writer of the ages.’ Isn’t that super? That’s not all.” Dennis looked mysterious.
“When Charles accepted Jesus, he told a friend about it. He wondered if he should keep still and not tell others how great he felt. His friend told him, ‘No. If you had a thousand tongues you should use them all for Jesus.’ ”
Dennis took a deep breath. “Know what Charles Wesley did? He wrote a hymn that said, ‘O for a thousand tongues to sing / My great Redeemer’s praise’.”
“Well done,” Dad told Dennis. “When we sing ‘Hark, the Herald Angels Sing’ we can remember how it came to be written.”
“Next time it’s my turn.” Sarah reminded them. “I am going to do ‘Joy to the World.’ I can hardly wait.”
“Neither can we,” Mom said.
She and Dad laughed and hugged the children before going on with their worship.