THE CHRISTMAS CANTATA
St. James Music Press
November 10, 2011
When someone finds an old score of music written in an open score, most musicians would avoid it and
not play through it. Open scores are very demanding and most organists shy away from playing
through this music. Fortunately for St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, their organist and head law
enforcement official is the type of person that plays through this music and chooses it for his church
choir for their Christmas Eve service which is three weeks away. However, Hayden Konig is open-
minded enough to notice the unique beauty in this particular Christmas cantata, written by an unknown
In St. Germaine, North Carolina, as Christmas is quickly approaching, it seems like the spirit of Christmas
missing since everyone is just plain crabby. Hayden does notice the mood quickly changing as the choir
learns and discovers the beauty of the message and the music within this cantata. He also begins to
investigate the history of this piece and why it was not premiered during the Christmas of 1942. Who
was this talented, although unknown, composer? Who in the congregation remembers what
With this crimeless mystery, the intertwining of the present day investigation with the events of the
same parish community of St. Barnabas during 1942 makes this a short intriguing novel. Although a
predictable ending, the story was reassuring of the purpose of our celebrations of Christmas.
With this being the tenth book in this series, there is much time spent on the many characters from the
previous novels. This can work as a standalone, but the reader is greatly missing out on some
delightful characters without having read this series.
Although short, this newest Mark Schweizer novel will not disappoint any reader of this musical series.