Hymns for the feast of the Holy Family, Year A (29 December 2019)

Hymn and song suggestions, based on themes from the Roman Catholic lectionary for the feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, in Year A.

Most are free-to-use (ie public domain or copyright-free)means the words can be copied and sung to at least one tune with no concerns about copyright or performance licensing. Many such hymns are old/traditional - but where possible a variety of styles / genres are included.   A small selection of hymns which are still copyright may also be included, if they are particularly relevant.

Most communities have a familiar repertoire of public domain Christmas music, so finding free-to-use hymns for time is simple. The list below doe not include all well known Christmas carols, just ones that are a particularly good fit with the lectionary themes for this feast.


First: Ecclesiasticus 3:2-6, 12-14 - Honour your father and mother.

Psalm: Psalm 127 - O blessed are those fear the Lord and walk in his ways / Your wife like a fruitful vine / Indeed thus shall be blessed

Second: Colossians 3:12-21 - Calling the people of God to live as a loving family.

Gospel: Matthew 2: 13-15, 19-23 - The Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, and warned him to escape to Egypt.  Joseph obeyed, and stayed until the Lord told him that it was safe to go back to Israel.


Love, family life, being faithful to what the Lord asks.

Art for this week

See lectionary art for this Sunday for suggested pictures and art-works based on today's readings.

Free-use hymns

Coventry Carol

For the Beauty of the Earth

Jesus my Lord my God my All

God is Love, His the Care

Love Came Down at Christmas

O Come all ye Faithful

Of the Father's Love Begotten

Once in Royal David's City

Unto us a Boy is Born (Dearmer)

What Child is This

Hymns which may still be copyright

A Voice was Heard in Ramah - Gilette  (ref)

Deep in the Darkness a Starlight is Gleaming - Berry

Flight into Egypt - Uher  (info and words / more info)

God's Holy Family - Schiavone

In the Night the Sound of Crying - Leckebusch

Lord who Left the Highest Heaven - Dudley-Smith

Lovely in your Littleness - Hayes

Refugee King - Vice  (video)

Sing of Mary, Pure and Lowly - Palmer

When Jesus was a Refugee - Damon (ref)

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