Longing and Waiting

Today our guests left.  That includes a son, so we are a wee bit sad.  But it is also the beginning of Advent.  We celebrate the first advent of Jesus and await the next.  It's a delight to pull out Maria Trapp's Around the Year with the Trapp Family during this time each year.   In 1955, Maria tells this story of when they first arrived in the United States and enjoyed celebrating their first Thanksgiving holiday.  But shortly after, they are shopping and become confused when "Silent Night" comes over the loudspeakers.  To them, it was the Advent season and "Silent Night" was to be saved and sung beginning on Christmas Eve!
It took several Christmas seasons before we understood the connection between Christmas shopping and "Silent Night" and the other carols blaring from loudspeakers in these pre-Christmas weeks.  And even now that we do understand, it still disturbs us greatly.  These weeks before Christmas, known as the weeks of Advent, are meant to be spent in expectation and waiting.  This is the season for Advent songs - those age-old hymns of longing and waiting;  "Silent Night" should be sung for the first time on Christmas Eve.  We found that hardly anybody knows any Advent songs." - Maria Augusta Trapp, Around the Year with the Trapp Family,  p. 15

Here are the songs she lists for Advent.  Our favorite is "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" and I've embedded  a favorite video of the Franz Family singing it. I think they capture that "longing and waiting".  Do you have any favorite Advent songs that your family sings?

-"O Come, O come, Emmanuel"
-"You Heavens, Dew Drop From Above"
-"Drop Your Dew, Ye Clouds of Heaven"
-"O Saviour, Heaven's Portal Rend"
-"Maria Walks Amid the The Thorn"
-"Blessed Mother of the Saviour"

Oh Come, Oh Come, Emmanuel by The Franz Family // Canon 5D Mark II from ColdWater Media on Vimeo.

Admiration, Hope and Love,



  1. yikes. she's right as far as it goes with me... the ONLY one on her list I recognize is Oh come, Oh come Emmanuel... I'm totally saving Silent Night though this year. :) thanks for setting me straight.


    amy in peru

  2. WE saw the grandchildren sing: the Von Trapp Singers , right before Christmas about 6 years ago. They have grown up since then.
    WE sing many Advent songs ..... Emma is in a huge Teen Choir ( 90 ) and they will join our church choir for the Christmas Concert. Last year it was the Messiah. Yes, the whole thing.
    I agree: Silent Night for Christmas Eve. We also sing Happy Birthday to my oldest on Christmas Eve!

  3. I had the joy of seeing the current Von Trapp singers nearly ten years ago. It was a concert I will never forget.

    Growing up Lutheran we observe the musical "strictness" of Advent, too....just Advent hymns now!

  4. ditto to Amy!

    Bobby Jo