“What would you like for a Christmas present?” To any young girl such a question would evoke delighted visions of long-wished-for possessions, but to Dolly the answer to her father, John Byron, was, “Please write me a poem.” So on Christmas morning in 1749, Dolly found on her plate at breakfast a piece of paper on which was written a hymn entitled, “Christmas day, for Dolly.”
Soon after, John Wainwright the organist of Manchester Parish Church wrote a tune for it. On the following Christmas morning, Byron and Dolly were awakened by the sound of singing below their windows. It was Wainwright with his choir singing Dolly’s hymn, “Christians, Awake.”
Christians, awake, salute the happy morn,
Where-on the Saviour of the world was born;
Rise to adore the mystery of love,
Which hosts of angels chanted from above;
With them the joyful tiding first begun
Of God incarnate and the Virgin’s Son.
Tan, P. L. (1996, c1979). Encyclopedia of 7700 illustrations : [a treasury of illustrations, anecdotes, facts and quotations for pastors, teachers and Christian workers]. Garland TX: Bible Communications.