Now there were shepherds at work in the hills,
Safeguarding their sheep, all silent and still,
When a blaze of glory split the night sky,
An angel of God confronting their eyes.
Fear seized their hearts, but the angel, he laughed:
"Oh, give up your terror; fear's day is past!
Joy is the message our God has unfurled,
Yes, great joy for you and for the whole world!
Today he arrives, the long-sought-for One--
Heartbeat of heaven, the Father's own Son!
The Savior, Messiah, the endless Lord!
Full incarnation of God's holy Word!
And this is the sign by which you may know
The One that God sends to make all things whole:
A baby is he, in swaddling clothes,
Laid in manger. You have it: now go!"
And then there burst forth an army of light,
With praises exploding the stillness of night.
"Glory to God in the highest!" they sang,
As over the hills their symphony rang.
"Let there be peace in the nations of men!
Peace for all creatures, a peace without end!
And God's great goodwill shall reign in this place,
And love to all people, and riches of grace!"