While donating to a charity appeal, I was reminded that there are currently many international crisis appeals, not only in Ukraine, but in Syria, where 11 years of civil war have led to 12 million displaced people needing food and other provisions; in Afghanistan, where the ongoing civil war has led to 8 million people on the brink of famine and 23 million are in need of assistance; in Yemen, which after years of civil war is one of the poorest of countries of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and where 20 million people remain in need; in Haiti, which still is recovering from the earthquake last summer; and in Tonga, recovering from one of the worst Pacific volcano eruptions. Charitable appeals also help many other places struggle with chronic poverty and hunger, such as the Democratic Republic of Congo, East Africa, Niger, the Sahel, Venezuela, and indeed regions the world over suffering from ecological disasters
All this human need is overwhelming, when parts of the United Kingdom also face poverty from fuel and food price rises, following after the stresses of the pandemic. The Resolution Foundation think tank said that 1.3 million people would fall into absolute poverty while 12.5 million people in the UK will soon be unable to afford basic necessities. The individual tragedy, the plight of a particular family, is easily overlooked among the mass of millions. Such global and national suffering is beyond comprehension and more than enough to pierce one’s heart (Luke 2:35).
A phenomenon well known to charities is “compassion fatigue”, when we are faced with constant news of terrific and ongoing suffering and when our ability to do anything so limited. The word compassion literally means ‘suffer with’ (from the Latin, com “with, together” + pati “to suffer”, an ecclesiastical loan-translation of the Greek sympatheia, with similar original meaning). Compassion fatigue is when we protect ourselves from further heartache by closing ourselves off from others’ pain and need. This self-defensive mechanism is quite understandable, but is nevertheless regrettable, for it is to become head hearted and deaf to the cry of the afflicted.
On Saturday evening, 2nd April, we begin a season called Passiontide (which the Church of England keeps from from evensong on the Eve of the Fifth Sunday of Lent, being the first evening prayer of Passion Sunday, to the evening of Easter Eve). It is a time we look to Jesus’ suffering, recognising in this one man God’s presence in suffering. We read the Passion Narrative on Palm Sunday, in the eucharists of Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of Holy Week, and in the Passion Liturgy of Good Friday. These are the gospel accounts of Jesus’ opposition to the economics of the Temple, which led to his suffering and death by crucifixion. This was a cruel form of capital punishment used by the Romans for political insurgents, designed to cause pain so as to act as a deterrent to others.
Following the accounts of Jesus’ passion, being aware of his prophetic call for justice and sensitive to his consequent suffering and death, helps train us and sustain us in compassion. Opening our hearts to Jesus’ suffering can help us to see God in the vulnerability and suffering of another person. In looking to Jesus we should become better able to recognise Christ in people who are poor, homeless, displaced, refugees, who are the victims of war and civil conflict, and to hold them in our compassion and prayer.
May our prayer this Passiontide season be to better see God in those in need and to hear their cry as God’s call to us.
A Prayer of Saint Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa)
Lord, open our eyes that we may see you in our brothers and sisters.
Lord, open our ears that we may hear the cries of the hungry,
the cold, the frightened, the oppressed.
Lord, open our hearts that we may love each other as you love us.
Renew in us your spirit.
Lord, free us and make us one.
PAUL OVEREND, CHANCELLOR
Worship & Mission
Weekly service schedule
The service sheet for the coming fortnight can be viewed on the cathedral website (click link to visit)
10 April, Palm Sunday
10.30am Sung Eucharist and Procession of Palms with Reading of the Passion
3.45pm Choral Evensong
11 April Monday of Holy Week
5.30pm Choral Evensong with singing of Lamentations (Pt I) by Tallis
7.30pm Compline, with Meditation
12 April, Tuesday of Holy Week
11am Chrism Eucharist
5.30pm Choral Evensong with singing of Lamentations (Pt II) by Tallis
7.30pm Compline, with Meditation
13 April, Tuesday of Holy Week
5.30pm Choral Evensong
7.30pm Tenebrae: An evening service for Holy Week
14 April, Maundy Thursday
7.30pm Eucharist of the Last Supper, Stripping of the Altar and watch of the passion until midnight
15 April, Good Friday
9.30am Liturgy of Good Friday
12 noon Three Hours’ Devotion
16 April, Easter Eve
8pm Paschal Vigil with Baptism and Confirmation and First Eucharist of Easter
17 April, Easter Day
8am Holy Communion
10.30am Sung Eucharist for Easter Day
12.30pm Holy Communion
3.45pm Festal Evensong for Easter Day
Meets next on Monday 11 April at 8.40am.
Future dates: 9 May, 13 June, 11 July
Sunday 22 May, 7pm
Sacred Space is a gentle and reflective service with time to wonder, the opportunity to use all your senses to explore faith and the chance to experience the unique and serene atmosphere of the Cathedral as the day draws to a close. It is led by the Revd Canon David Dadswell.
The following date for Sacred Space is:
Sunday 17 July
Becoming Church: Five Bible Studies on Acts 2:42-47
Join the Precentor and John Davies at 4pm in the Cathedral Café on Monday afternoons for a Lenten Bible Study, beginning on Monday 7th March. No need to book – just come along and buy a tea – study materials provided
Stations of the Cross
Throughout Lent, from 9 March, 4.30pm on Wednesdays.
Join one of our Chaplains for this quiet and devotional reflection on the journey to the Cross.
Lent sermon series
At Evensong, 3.45pm Sundays
3 April – Dr Sally Buck, Warden of Lay Ministry
10 April – Mr John Davies, Cathedral Reader
Palm cross making workshop
Wednesday 6 April 10am – 12pm
We will be making this year’s Palm Crosses on Wednesday 6 April from 10am. If you would like to help, please join us in the Vergers Vestry. All materials will be provided.
Please note that there will be road closures around the Cathedral on Sunday (3 April) while the Lincoln Run for the Ukraine takes place. The closures will be in place from early morning, and are expected to be lifted by 1.30pm.
For a full list of the roads which will be closed please visit – https://lincolnsantafunrun.co.uk/lincoln-run-for-ukraine-road-closures/
‘To Love and Serve the Lord’ Course
This is a 16-session course run by the Diocese of Lincoln for anyone wanting to explore Christian faith or become more confident in what they believe. It also serves as a foundation course for further training as an Authorised Lay Minister, if a person is called by their church to a ministry.
The course will run on Tuesday evenings, starting on 26 April. Each session will begin promptly at 7pm and end by 9pm. The venue will be All Saints Church Hall at Branston.
Course aims to develop theological reflection on the Christian life and ministry, and provide a theological context to allow participants to link their faith and everyday life. It also seeks to provide an environment to develop discipleship and offer a pathway towards lay ministry.
For more information or to book on to the course, please contact email@example.com
Please note that the Cathedral accounts for year ending 31 March 2021 are now available to view on our website – https://lincolncathedral.com/contact-us/annual-statement-and-accounts/
Easter school holiday activities
Monday 4 – Saturday 9 April 2022
10am to 3.30pm daily
Location: Learning Centre
Cost: £2 per child
Make and take away lots of lovely Easter crafts:
Including make an Easter flower basket, ‘stained -glass’ Easter window, bunny hat, collage animals and much more
Decorate and add a wooden egg to our Easter Tree
All ages welcome.
Child entry to the Cathedral is free during the holidays, but they must be accompanied with an entry paying adult
Lincoln Choral Society Presents An Evening Of Elgar
Friday 29 April, 7.30pm
Lincoln Choral Society, conducted by Mark Wilde, are joined by the Lincolnshire Chamber Orchestra to perform in Lincoln Cathedral’s stunning Nave.
Throughout the evening the Lincoln Choral Society will perform three pieces from Sir Edward Elgar featuring soloist, Mezzo-Soprano, Catherine Carby.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Monday 23 May – Saturday 4 June
The Starring Lincoln Theatre Company return to Lincoln cathedral with a performance of the well-known Disney adaptation of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Lincoln Cathedral Flower Festival: Vision
Thursday 4 – Monday 8 August
The Lincoln Cathedral Flower Festival will celebrate 950 years of Lincoln Cathedral, and the visionaries who had the inspiration to build such a wonderful building and those who followed, changing our lives throughout history.
For full details of events, and to book tickets, please visit https://lincolncathedral.com/forthcoming-events/
Sunday 3 April
Fifth Sunday of Lent
Isaiah 43. 16-21
Philippians 3. 4b-14
John 12. 1-8
2 Chornicles 35. 1-6, 10-16
Luke 22. 1-13
Sunday 10 April
Luke 19. 28-40
Philippians 2. 5-11
Luke 23. 1-49
Isaiah 5. 1-7
Luke 20. 9-19
Sunday 17 April
1 Corinthians 15.19-26
Isaiah 43. 1-21
1 Corinthians 15. 1-11