By the time of reading this newsletter we will be at the end of a fortnight of celebrations which began with the Coronation and followed this week by our City’s staging of the Eurovision events on behalf of last year’s winners, Ukraine. It is to the credit of our City and its people that so many visitors and participants have commented on the genuine welcome that they have received during their time here.
These celebrations may have come to an end but we still have a number of major church celebrations to look forward to as we reach the latter part of the Easter Season. This weekend we celebrate the Anniversary of the Dedication of our Cathedral. Bishop Augustine Harris presided at the opening ceremony and dedication of our Cathedral in 1967 which that year happened to be the weekend of Pentecost. We give thanks for the role that our Cathedral has played within our region over these 56 years and we pray for all who have played a part in the life of our community over these years. Members of the Chapter of Canons will be joining us this afternoon for Choral Evening Prayer on our Cathedral Anniversary. Also, this week we celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension on Thursday.
In a fortnights time we look forward to the Solemnity of Pentecost. This is not just a major Feast within the Church’s year it has considerable local importance for our Cathedral as the Feastday on which our building was first opened and for both Liverpool’s Cathedrals as the day on which Saint John Paul visited both, and journeyed as a pilgrim along Hope Street.
We have tried to remain faithful to this joint act of pilgrimage between our two Cathedrals at Pentecost ever since. This year the short joint afternoon Pentecost Service will begin at Liverpool Cathedral at 3pm with a short address from the new Bishop of Liverpool, Bishop John Perumbalath. We will then make our way to the steps of our Cathedral to finish with a short service on our Piazza and then if the weather is suitable a party on the steps with an opportunity for picnic and some children’s and family activities and games. The theme of the service this year is ‘Many Nations, One Church’. It would be great if people could bring various national flags little or larger and even come in national dress just to show our rich diversity of nationality and culture yet our unity in Christ.