Acclaimed singer-songwriter Matt Maher has announced the release of his first-ever holiday album, The Advent Of Christmas, releasing on Provident Label Group on Oct. 19. The same day, Maher is also releasing his new children's book with the same name on Wellspring Publishing.
Over the course of his ten-year recording career, The Advent Of Christmas marks Maher's first true holiday album. The 13-song collection includes both original songs, as well as traditional favorites, and Maher hopes that they will help listeners prepare for and better appreciate the four weeks of Advent leading up to Christmas day.
"From the very beginning and through the history of Christianity, the season of Advent has been a way of remembering--more fully--the mystery of God becoming human," Maher says. "Long before the Macy's Day Parade, red Starbucks cups and The Elf on a Shelf, Christians marked the passage of time in the four weeks before Christmas by remembering and embracing the sense of anticipation around the arrival of the promised Messiah; to prepare for the coming of Jesus."
He adds, "When you have relatives and friends coming for the holidays, you try to take time to get ready. The whole point is to prepare. I wanted to have a collection of songs - some that are familiar and many that are new - that prepare us for the four weeks of Advent and how each week is devoted to the concepts of hope, peace, joy, and love."
Mirroring this hope, Maher's new children's book, "The Advent of Christmas," is a picture book targeted at children and their families which shares the spiritual meaning of Advent and teaches the meaning of each advent candle. Going beyond Santa and the presents, the book also teaches children the story of the birth of Jesus and why Christmas truly is "the most wonderful time of the year."
Kicking off this Thursday, Sept. 20, Maher is headlining the month-long "Bible Tour," where he is joined by artists such as Natalie Grant, Andrew Peterson, and more. Maher is also performing on the "Roadshow Christmas" tour beginning Nov. 29 and running through Dec. 16, with full dates available on his tour page.
Click below to watch the official lyric video to Maher's uplifting Christmas song "Glory (Let There Be Peace)" featured on the upcoming album, or click here to watch on YouTube:
The Advent Of Christmas Track Listing:
1. Gabriel's Message
2. He Shall Reign Forevermore
3. Born On That Day
4. Jingle Bells
5. The First Noel
6. Hope For Everyone
7. Glory (Let There Be Peace)
8. Come Emmanuel
9. Always Carry You (feat. Amy Grant)
10. Love Came Down To Bethlehem
11. Hark The Herald
12. Merry Little Christmas
13. When I Think Of Christmas