Earlier this week, members of the Republican Caucus gathered to conduct winter caucus where we elected a new Caucus Secretary, my suitemate
Rep. Jason Chipman, and discuss the upcoming legislative agenda. Among one of the topics discussed was an increase in Capitol security measures and protocols. These security enhancements are currently being implemented to coincide with the quickly approaching inauguration and related festivities. Now, on to a few lighter, holiday-inspired topics!
Holiday Season Brings Good News for Missouri Workers
As Missourians prepare to enjoy the holidays, they do so with some welcome good news about the state's employment picture. The most recent numbers reported by the Missouri Department of Economic Development show healthy job growth and a continued decline in unemployment.
The number of jobs in Missouri grew by 1,900 during the month of November. This brings the total number of jobs gained in the state during the last year to 57,000. The figure represents job growth of more than 2 percent, and brings the total number of jobs in Missouri to more than 2.8 million, which is a record high. At the same time, unemployment dropped to 4.7 percent in November, which is down from 5.1 percent unemployment in October. Hopefully, 2017 will be even better!
I shared this a few years ago, and thought it was worth another look.
Here are some short histories of a few standard Christmas carols.
"The First Noel" is one of the best known Christmas carols dating back to 17th century England. The version we sing today had its roots in the 1820s.
"Silent Night" originated in Germany. Although Fr. Joseph Mohr had written the lyrics to "Stille Nacht" in 1816, he made it public in 1818 when his parish's organ went on the fritz and could not be repaired by Christmas Eve. The song was quickly given music for a guitar and the tune has stuck as a Christmas standard. In 1859, American Episcopal Bishop John Freeman Young translated the words to English and this has become the most sung version around the world.
"O Little Town of Bethlehem" was the product of an Episcopal priest, Phillips Brooks. He penned the words in 1868, three years after a trip to the birthplace of Jesus. The church organist wrote the words, and a classic was born!
"Angels We Have Heard on High" was originally published in 1862. It is based on the French hymn "Gloria."
"God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" is a traditional English carol first published in 1833. However, the author is unknown.
"Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" was originally published in a collection by Charles Wesley in 1739. This version had a slower
tempo, but a more upbeat tempo has developed over the years.
"It Came Upon a Midnight Clear" was written by Unitarian minister Edmund Sears in 1849.
"O Christmas Tree" is based on the German traditional song, "O Tannenbaum." The version we know was published in 1824.
"What Child is This," was published in 1865 by William Chatterton Dix while he was bedridden with illness. He wrote the words and set it to the traditional English tune, "Greensleeves." The tune is so old that Shakespeare made reference to it.
"O Holy Night" was published in 1847 based on a French poem.
I want to thank you all for a great year. It is my pleasure to continue to serve as your State Representative. I wish you a safe and joyful holiday season! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!