Will Dong People Hear the Herald Angels Sing?

Singing through the Christmas carols, how many of us have the first line memorized, but have to crack the hymnal to sing anything beyond that? Most of us, probably. As a Christmas prayer for the Dong, we will use the third line from "It Came upon the Midnight Clear" which seemed more than fitting to the Dong people of China's rugged mountains.

And ye, beneath life's crushing load,

Whose forms are bending low,

Who toil along the climbing way

With painful steps and slow,

Look now! for glad and golden hours

Come swiftly on the wing:

O rest beside the weary road,

And hear the angels sing!

It is hard to read through those verses without putting it to music, and why not! Let us all sing this prayer for the Dong people.
Both figuritively and literally, the Dong are bent low below life's crushing load. They have no way out of the shadow of death and sin, and have only songs to cheer them some as they carry their daily burdens back and forth along the mountain trails between house and field.
Let us sing a prayer that they will have an opportunity to take rest beside the road and listen to the good tidings which the angels first spoke on the night Jesus was born.
Jesus, Lord at thy birth, we sing this carol this year as more than a celebration to you and your birth, but we also sing this carol for it reminds us of the Dong people who still have not heard the news of your birth and cannot share in our celebration. Just as you sent the angels to the shepherds, we ask you to proclaim the good news all along the Chinese hills to the Dong and the other people who live there. "Hear the angels sing!"

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