“Theotokos,” translated as “God-bearer” or “Mother of God,” is one of the most important titles given to Mary. It is also important in clarifying the Church's belief that Jesus did not simply “become” God; he was divine from his conception. So this feast, which appears to be a feast of Mary, is actually a further clarification of the meaning of Christmas.

Numbers 6:22-27. To be able to name God and to use the divine name suggested an intimate connection between God and the people. The same is true for those who call themselves "Christians."

Psalm of the Day: Ps (66) 67. This hymn of praise echoes phrases from the "blessing of Aaron" in the first reading; it calls on all the nations to praise God, who rules the whole world with justice.

May God Bless Us PSL A-21
May God Bless Us (Batastini/Gelineau) WOR 783/RS 95/LPGG 785
May God Bless Us (Guimont) GC 66/GC2 936/RS 94/LPMG 18
May God Bless Us (Kogut) PCY10 28
May God Bless Us (Kraehenbuehl) PMB 573
May God Bless Us (Schiavone) JS 897/LP 27
O God, Be Gracious (Lee/Young) CBW 36

Galatians 4:4-7. Because we are united to Christ, we can address God as "Abba," the title that Jesus seemed to prefer to use. In fact, because Christ's spirit lives in us, we are children of God.

Luke 2:16-21. Most of this text is a reprise of the Gospel reading for Christmas Mass at Dawn, which connects this feast to Christmas. It continues with the account of Jesus' circumcision and his naming. "Jesus" is the Greek version of "Joshua," which means "liberator" or "savior."

Music Suggestions

Choral Anthems

Songs for the Liturgy

*A Blessing (1) WC 766/WS/PMB 471
All Who Claim the Faith of Jesus (G) RS 897
Ave Maria (G) W3 713/W4 902/LMGM 95/LMGM2 733/WC 998/RS 896,898/GC2 772,774/G3 887,891/JS2 493,504/JS3 483,486/MI-BB 709,716/GP 709,713/PMB 532/SS 1030,1043
Blessed One WS 1002/WS 830                                                                                                    
Bwana Awabariki/May God Grant You a Blessing (1) LMGM 155
Carol at the Manger (G) GC 369/GC2 354/RS 516
Child of Mercy (G) RS 506/GC 357/GC2 368/
*Hail, Holy Mother (E) IH 10

*Hail Mary: Gentle Woman (G) GP 426/JS2 489/JS3 481/GC2 779/G3 889/MI-BB 703/WC 1000/WS 835/SPS305
Hark! the Herald Angels Sing (All Masses)  W3 387/W4 414/JS2 345/JS3 313/CBW 323/LMGM 13/LMGM2 247/GP 317/BB 84/WC 519/GC 348/GC2 356/G3 424/RS 502/WS 457/PMB 199/SS 774
I Sing a Maid (G) GC 781/GC2 777/CBW 462/RS 899
*Jesus Christ, the Same (C) PSL A-22
*Jesus Christ, Yesterday, Today and Forever (C) RS 679/GC 745/GC2 730
Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming (1,G)  W3 374/W4 438/LMGM 24/LMGM2 263/JS2 338/JS3 302/GP 320/GC2 373/G3 451/BB 93/WC 526/PMB 210/WS 469/SS 763
*Lord, Today (E) RS 536/GC 375/GC2 385/GP 338
Magnificat/Canticle of Mary (2)   W3 15,87,88,534,553/W4 16,120,121,122,123,124,613/LMGM2 44,689/WC 488,486,223,701/MI-BB 706,713,830,831,832,/RS 17,209,210,211,656,675/GP 163,291,292,427,428,433,434,436/GC2 13,84,522,773,782/G3 16,101,102,892,894/CBW 14I,575,674,675,676,677,678/JS2 11,119,120,495,501,503,505/JS3 11,120,121,474,480,487/PMB 9,180,181,182/WS 423,568/SS 371,1035/SPS 109,110,111
*Mary, Full of Grace (G) MI‑BB  710
*Mary, Woman of the Promise (G) CBW 465/JS2 496/JS3 477/SS 1034
*May God Bless and Keep You (1,Ps) JS 827/MI‑BB 392/GP 623/GC 577
*May God Bless You (1,Ps) JS 566/MI‑BB 677/GP 467
May the Lord, Mighty God (1,Ps) RS 721/GC 589
O Chosen One (2,G) GP 435
O God, Our Help in Ages Past (New Year) WOR 579/CBW 644/GP 613/LMGM 230/MI‑BB 430/JS 705/WC 867/GC 614/GC2 588/RS 735/WS733/PMB 435
O Holy Mary (G) JS 494/MI‑BB 712
Of the Father's Love Begotten (2) WOR 398/CBW 330/JS 349/WC 516/BB 86/GC 351/GC2 374/RS 510/PMB 211/WS470/SS 758
Salamu Maria LMGM 98
She Will Show Us the Promised One (G) WC 985/PMB 539
Sing of Mary (G) W3 404/W4 444/GP 432/LMGM 100/LMGM2 271/WC 1009/MI-BB 711/RS 528/GC2 778/G3 457/JS2 490/JS3 472/WS 838/PMB 538/SS 1031
Song of Mary JS 498/MI-BB 705
Stainless the Maiden (G) WC 981/WS 826
The God Whom Earth and Sea and Sky (G)   JS2 514/JS3 493/CBW 464/W3 405/W4 447/SS 1027
The Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy (G) GC 345/GC2 378/RS 501/HG 21
There Is Nothing Told (G) GP 431/MI‑BB 715/JS 502
Virgin Born, We Bow before You (G) WOR 403/RS 527
What Child Is This W3 411/W4 454/JS2 365/JS3 330/CBW 338/LMGM 29/LMGM2 277/GP 337/BB 110/WC 551/GC 380/GC2 387/G3 466/RS 530/WS 460/PMB 216/SS 780/SPS 153


Choral Anthems

Entrance Antiphon See Isaiah 9: 2, Luke 1: 33

Title of Anthem, Voicing & Instrumentation Composer/arranger/editor Publisher & edition #  
Aaronic Blessing, The  (SATB) Willan, Healey C.F. Peters  (6099) 1
Almighty God, Which Hast Me Brought Ford, T. CPDL G
Awake, My Glory  (SATB, Organ, opt. Guitar) Diemer, Emma Lou Abingdon  (APM-962) PS
Babe Is Born in Bethlehem, A  (SATB, Organ) Van Dyke, Paul C. Flammer  (A-5549) E
Benediction, The  (SATB) Nystedt, Knut Associated  (A-500) 1
Child Is Born in Bethlehem, A  (SATB, 8 Handbells) Batastini, Robert (arr.) GIA  (G-2309) E
Child Is Born in Bethlehem, A  (SATB, organ) Nestor,  Leo  E.C. Schirmer  (ECS 4389) E
Child Is Born in Bethlehem, A  (SAB, 5 Handbells) Proulx, Richard GIA  (G-4651) E
Christians, Awake (SATB) Wainwright Oxford  (from Oxford New Carols, p. 244) G
Deus, Misereatur Nostri  (SATB)
Deus, Misereatur Nostri  (SATB)
Schütz, Heinreich/Klein, Maynard
, Heinreich/Ehret, Walter
G. Schirmer  (11969)
Tetra (A. Broude)  (AB 742)
Ecce Concipies (SATB, a cappella Latin
Ecce Concipies  (SATB, a cappella, Latin/English)
Ecce Concipies  (SATB, a cappella, Latin)
Handl, Jacob
Handl, Jacob/Simkins, Carl
Handl, Jacob
Arista  (AE 243)
Concordia  (98-2244) *
J.W. Chester  (55107)
Ecce Concipes Handl CPDL – I.C. G
Festival Psalm  (SATB, Organ) Arnatt, Ronald H.W. Gray  (CMR 2684) PS
For Unto Us A Child is Born  (SATB, SAB) Händel, George F. Various Editions E
For Unto Us A Child Is Born 
(SAB, Soprano, Alto, Bass soli, 2 violins, continuo, English/German)
Krieger, J. P. Concordia  (97-4692) * E
God Be Merciful  (SS or SA, Organ) Bouman, Paul Concordia  (98-2471) * PS
God Be Merciful  (SATB) Tchesnokoff, Paul/Dash, James A. Summy Birchard  (J5525) PS
God Be Merciful Unto Us  (SATB, Organ) Aston, Peter Novello  (MT.1494) PS
God Be Merciful Unto Us  (SSA) Willan, Healey Concordia  (97-7160) * PS
God Sent Forth His Son (SATB, Organ/Keyboard) Gibbs, Aller Orton Abingdon  (APM-966) 2
Let All the Peoples Praise Thee  (SA, Organ) Powell, Robert J. Concordia  (98-1973) * PS
Let the People Praise Thee, O God  (SATB, 2 Trumpets) Berger, Jean Tetra (A Broude) (754) PS
Let the People Praise Thee, O God 
from “Festival Service Book #8”  (SATB, Organ)
Firth, Michael RSMC PS
Let the People Praise Thee, O God  (Unison, 2 Violins, Continuo) Hammerschmidt, A./Oberdoerffer Concordia  (98-1826) * PS
Let the People Praise Thee, O God  (SATB, Organ) Mathias, William Oxford  (A-331) PS
Let All Peopl Praise Thee, O God  (SAB, Organ) Shaw, Martin Novello  (85079) PS
Lord Be Merciful Unto us, Op. 259, No. 2  (SATB) Hovhaness, Alan Rongwen (Broude Brothers) (RM 3527) PS
Lord Bless You, The  (SATB) Mueller, Carl F. G. Schirmer  (8069) 1
Lord Bless You and Keep You, The  (SATB)
Lord Bless You and Keep You, The  (SATB)
Lutkin, Peter
Lutkin, Peter
Concordia  (97-6320) *
Presser  (312.40420)
Lord Bless You and Keep You, The  (SATB, keyboard) Rutter, John Hinshaw  (HMC-570) 1
May the Peoples Praise You, O God  (Unison) Gieseke, Richard Concordia  (98-2929) PS
O Mary of All (from Two Hymns in the Dorian Mode) (SATB) Jennings, Joseph Wilcox World Library  (CA-1681-8) G
Of Woman Born  (2-part mixed, children's choir, Flute, Oboe, Bassoon, keyboard) O'Brien, Fran GIA  (G-5916) G
O God, Be Merciful  (SATB) Tye, Christopher/Buck, P.C. Oxford PS
People Who Walked in Darkness, The  (SAB) Gieseke, Richard Concordia  (97-5481) E
Psalm 67  (Unison, SATB) Horman, John Choristers Guild  (CGA 589) PS
Psalm 67  (SAB, Organ) Wood, Dale Augsburg  (11-9376) * PS
Psalm 67  (SATB, Glockenspiel, String Bass, Organ) Zimmerman, Heinz W. Carl Fischer  (CM 7857) PS
Puer Natus Est Nobis  (SAB, Latin, English)
Puer Natus Est Nobis  (SAB, Latin, English)
Morales, Cristobal/Stone, KurtMorales, Cristobal/Proulx, Richard Broude Brothers  (BB 4071)GIA  (G-4154) E
Puer Natus In Bethlehem  (SATB, C instrument, Continuo) Werner, Gregor/Klammer,Edward GIA  (G-3034) E
Sixty-Seventh Psalm, The  (SSATB) Ives, Charles Associated  (1-274) PS
Sing of Mary, Pure and Lowly  (SATB, keyboard) Armstrong, Matthew Concordia (Logia)  (98-3366) G
To Us A Child Is Born  (SATB, organ) Schütz, Heinrich/Wunderlich, R.E. Concordia  (98-1494) E
Unto Us A Child Is Born  (SATB/SATB) Franck, Melchior/Ehret, Walter Shawnee  (A-1522) E
Unto Us A Child Is Born  from “We Praise Thee,” Vol. 1 (SSA) Willan, Healey Concordia  (97-7564) E
Verga Jesse Bruckner CPDL G
What Child Is This?  (SATB) Warland, Dale (arr.) Jenson Publications
(419-23-44, Vol. 1)

* out of print