O Holy Night is a family favorite

Published 4:00 pm Monday, December 18, 2023

I wanted to share my family’s most precious and beloved Christmas carol with you. I grew up hearing Andy Williams singing this song on his NBC television show in the 1960’s and have loved it ever since.

The poem was written by Placide Cappeau in 1843 and was set to music in 1847 by Adolphe Adam.

The third verse speaks to my heart the strongest. Cappeau was opposed to slavery when he wrote it. Today, slavery can be the oppression of any people whose dignity and rights are restricted, or by human trafficking, or of those who are enslaved in their minds against others by their bigotry, hatred or narrow mindedness. The third verse tells us how to overcome slavery in any form.

This Christmas, may the light and love of Jesus Christ fill our hearts with His love and His Gospel of Peace. Luke 2:11-14.


O holy night, the stars are brightly shining;
It is the night of the dear Savior’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born!

Led by the light of faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here came the wise men from the orient land.
The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger,
In all our trials born to be our friend.
He knows our need, to our weakness no stranger.
Behold your King, before Him lowly bend!
Behold your King, your King, before Him lowly bend!

Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we;
Let all within us praise His holy name.
Christ is the Lord! O praise his name forever!
His power and glory evermore proclaim!
His power and glory evermore proclaim!

I wish you a Merry and blessed Christmas from my family to you and your family.

Leesa Jones is a Washington native and the co-curator of the Washington Waterfront Underground Railroad Museum.