The Seasons of Advent & Christmas at the Cathedral

2021 Christmas Offering


Each year, the vestry of Christ Church Cathedral designates an organization that serves the greater good as the recipient of the Christmas offerings, that is the donations collected during the Christmas Eve and Christmas day offertory. The collection is then matched by the Coombe Fund. This year, the Vestry has endorsed Haiti as the recommended Christmas donation designee.

The combined effects of an assassinated President, escalating violence, pandemic, long-term poverty, an August 2021 earthquake and Tropical Storm Grace all created a synergistic impact upon Haitians this year that merit our love and support. The dollars raised will be matched by the Coombe Fund, and sent to Episcopal Relief & Development for distribution through its established network and ground operations in Haiti.

Those wishing to contribute to the Christmas offering may write a check payable to Christ Church Cathedral with Christmas Offering in the memo line. Or, donations made be made on donate online at here and clicking on Christmas Offering in the drop-down box. Thank you for your generosity when giving this year.

An Advent Procession with Lessons and Carols
Sunday, November 28 | 5:00 pm

This beautiful service is a wonderful way to begin the season of waiting for Christ’s birth. It is built around the seven Great “O” Antiphons that were traditionally sung at Vespers on the seven days prior to Christmas and eventually became the seven stanzas of the familiar Advent hymn “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.” During the service, music, Scripture readings, and prayers invite us to reflect on each of the antiphons. Seven gorgeous banners bearing the “O” Antiphon symbols, each carried in procession while its corresponding antiphon is sung, make this a visually as well as musically rich experience. Music sung by the choir will include: O Sapientia (Robert Ramsey); O Come, Divine Messiah (arr. Howard Helvey); Virga Jess (Thomas Juneau); O Lord, How Shall I Meet You (Stephan Casurella); Infinite Light (arr. Paul Halley); Ave Generosa (Margaret Rizza). (Incense will be used at this service.)


Advent Wreath Making
Sunday, November 28

Please join us in the South Corridor for this wonderful cathedral tradition! Following the 10am and noon services, we will have tables set with fresh pine and fir, beautiful locally-made advent beeswax candles, and a metal wreath frame for taking home and creating your very own Advent wreath. We will also have resources and ideas for making this a contemplative and meaningful seasonal tradition for all ages. (Metal frames from years past can be returned and updated with new greenery and candles!) Grab your resource booklet here. 


Advent Gatherings
Wednesdays, December 1, 8, 15

Dean Owen will host a gathering for fellowship, food and fun! These gatherings will take place in the library*, where we will be sharing the Eucharist and a potluck dinner, so please bring a dish to share. Nursery care is available for small children under 5. Older children are welcome to join.

Sign up at the reception desk or sign up online at to let us know you are coming!

*Join us in the undercroft on DECEMBER 8.


Handel’s Messiah
Sunday, December 5 | 3:00 pm

Christ Church Cathedral’s director of music Stephan Casurella conducts Collegium Cincinnati in its annual performance of Handel’s Messiah (complete) with orchestra. Ticket information. Link to  live-stream. Listen to Stephan’s interview with WGUC’s Elaine Diehl about this year’s performance.


Blue Christmas Liturgy 
Saturday, December 11 | 1:00 pm

Christmas holidays don’t feel bright and cheery for everyone. Living in the midst of grief – the death of a loved one, picking up the pieces after a divorce or separation, coping with job loss, living with illness, or other circumstances that mute our experience of deep joy – these things can make holiday festivities painful for many people. With this in mind, Christ Church Cathedral will be offering “Blue Christmas: A Service for Grieving, Praying, and Healing.” Our worship will be candle lit, with space for silence and reflection, with music and meditations for honoring our grief and holding out hope for healing and wholeness.


YPCC Family Holiday Concert
Saturday, December 11 | 4:00 pm

The Young Professionals Choral Collective (YPCC) Community Carolers conducted by Danielle Cozart Steele sing sacred and secular holiday favorites. Children’s activities precede the concert at 3:00 pm. Ticket information. Children 12 and under are admitted at no charge.


Lessons and Carols Concert
Saturday, December 18 | 7:00 pm

Local singer-songwriters offer readings and Christmas carols in a variety of styles. No admission charge.


A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols | Sunday, December 19
4:30 pm | Pre-service Recital (Stephan Casurella, organist)
5:00 pm | Lessons and Carols

Based on a beloved service offered at King’s College in Cambridge, England, A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols takes an imaginative approach to liturgy, weaving together scripture and song, moving from prophecy to fulfillment, to tell the story of the birth of Jesus. In addition to carols sung by the congregation, the choir will sing Resonemus laudibus (arr. Willcocks), Adam Lay Ybounden (Boles), I Wonder as I Wander (arr. Rutter), O Come, Divine Messiah (arr. Helvey), Virga Jesse (Juneau), A Maiden Most Gentle (arr. Carter), Jesus, Jesus, Rest Your Head (arr. Halley), Sussex Carol (arr. Willcocks), The Magi’s Dream (Whitbourn), and The Huron Carol (arr. Daley).


A Ceremony of Carols
Tuesday, December 21 | 12;10 PM

Composed in 1942 by Benjamin Britten, A Ceremony of Carols is an extended choral composition for a three-part treble chorus, solo voices, and harp. The text, structured in eleven movements, is taken from The English Galaxy of Shorter Poems, edited by Gerald Bullett. It is principally in Middle English, with some Latin and Early Modern English. Originally conceived as a series of unrelated songs, it was later unified into one piece with the framing processional and recessional chant in unison based on the Gregorian antiphon “Hodie Christus natus est.” The work is sung by members of the cathedral choir accompanied by harpist Elizabeth Motter.


Christmas Eve
Friday, December 24

Holy Eucharist | 4:00 PM

Anthems: The Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy – arr. David Blackwell | My Lord Has Come – Will Todd


Carols Before Festal Eucharist | 10:30 PM

Adam Lay Ybounden – Frank Boles
I Wonder as I Wander – arr. John Rutter
Sussex Carol – arr. David Willcocks
Jesus, Jesus, Rest Your Head – arr. Paul Halley
Resonemus laudibus – arr. David Willcocks
The Huron Carol – arr. Eleanor Daley


Festal Eucharist | 11:00 PM

Service: Missa Brevis – Jonathan Dove

Anthems: What Sweeter Music – John Rutter | O magnum mysterium – Tomás Luis de Victoria


Christmas Day
Saturday, December 25
Holy Eucharist | 10:00 AM

Anthems: The Holly and the Ivy – arr. Craig Phillips | The Wexford Carol – arr. Robert Lehman


Boar’s Head and Yule Log Festival
Saturday, January 1, 2022 | 2:00 PM (dress rehearsal) • 5:00 PM
Sunday, January 2, 2022 | 2:30 PM • 5:00 PM


A Celebration of Epiphany
Thursday, January 6 | 12:10 PM

A service of Holy Eucharist that commemorates the coming of Magi and completes the twelve days of Christmas.