Hard times

The structure of Charles Dickens’ “Hard Times” is based on a verse from St. Paul’s letter to the Galatians:

For whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Galatians 6.7)

With Book I entitled “Sowing”; Book II entitled “Reaping”, and Book III, “Garnering.”

We certainly face hard times at the moment with the dangers of COVID-19 rearing its ugly head again this last week; continuing civic strife in the United States (seemingly to get only worse as we approach the Presidential Election); and with the UK Government apparently content to break International Law. With our own personal difficulties, the challenges facing our communities and indeed our own Cathedral it can all seem too much, too hard.

But the fact is that however hard the times, Christian people living in the world are called to be people of good news: reflecting the hospitality, grace, love, forgiveness, and yes, peace of God. Being there alongside people as they look for answers; being alongside them in their humanity, revealing something of God’s ways.

Paul writing to the Galatians encourages us to be consistent in our actions and character, for, indeed, we do reap what we sow. Paul also encourages us to rely not on our own selves but on God, always being aware of the destructive effect of pride and overconfidence.

Work for the good of all, Paul tells the church; and not just when you feel like it, when you’ve got nothing better to do, but whenever the opportunity arises. We are also to demonstrate in the relationships within the church family the same markers of kindness, attentiveness and hospitality; so that we might be known as a people of consistent character, rooted in God’s love.

We do live in hard times, but we’re called to sow God’s seeds of love: to listen for his still, soft voice amidst all the background noises of strife, politics and sickness; to continually seek his will for our lives, the life of the church and our communities. By doing that and by God’s grace taking away some of the hardness: reaping a harvest of peace, healing and wholeness.



Worship & Mission

Choral Evensong
Choral Evensong will resume on Friday 18 September in the Nave at 5.30pm.
Subsequently there will be a service of Evensong every Tuesday and Friday. The remaining days of the week will be said Evening Prayer.

Orders of Service

You can download the order of service to your phone or tablet by scanning this QR code or the ones to be found in the nave during services. To scan the QR code open the camera app on your phone and point at the code. The phone should then recognise the code and take you directly to the orders of service.

Alternatively you can visit https://lincolncathedral.com/worship-music/home-worship-resources/orders-of-service/

9am to 9.45am in the retro-choir. Entrance via the Judgement Porch.

Stillpoint is a time of guided silent prayer where we can be aware of the presence of God. By being still before God we offer up ourselves, to listen to him, to gaze at the wonder and mystery of our world, to refresh and renew ourselves in his presence.

Led by Revd Ann Mazur.

Future dates for Stillpoint:
Saturday 10 October
Saturday 7 November
Saturday 5 December
Saturday 9 January


Organ Concert series
Tickets are now on sale for our series of organ concerts

For more information and to book tickets, please follow the link to each recital. Pre-booking is essential as there will not be tickets available on the door.

12 September: Jeffrey Makinson with Soprano, Laurie Ashworth

7 November: Colin Walsh

20 December: La Nativité du Seigneur, Colin Walsh

Flower Festival tickets now on sale
Tickets for Lincoln Cathedral’s Flower Festival – Vision 2021 – are now on sale.
Adult – £15
Concessions – £13.50
Group (10+) – £12.75
Under 16 – FREE
Tickets can be purchased by following this link or by calling 01522 561612.

There is also a preview evening on Wednesday 28 July, where visitors can enjoy drinks and canapés whilst getting the exclusive opportunity to see the beautiful blooms on display before the event open to the public.

Visitors are also invited to a ‘Musical Meander’ on Friday 30 July which will include musical accompaniment from a selection of talented musicians and tour around the Cathedral for guests to take in the colourful arrangements.


The Chapter Clerk writes:
It is no understatement that the Cathedral (along with very many other institutions) is facing the most significant of its many crises over recent years. The Chapter is doing its utmost to mitigate the effects of that. Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on the operation of the Cathedral and its commercial entities, and very difficult decisions have had to be taken quickly to ensure the sustainability of our most fabulous building and its core purpose of the worship of God.

In July, on the advice of the Finance Committee, Chapter and Lincoln Minster Shops Ltd began the process of inviting applications for voluntary redundancy, and it is with huge sadness that 13 applications were accepted. Between them, Bev Dowle (Assistant Chapter Clerk), Clare Ferrar (Events Officer), Margaret Pond, Helen Howick and Jo Taylor (Visitor Services Team), Anaïs Besnard (Glass Conservator), David Wheelband (Archivist), Paul Smith (Quarry Supervisor), Paul Ellis (Stone carver) and Phil Russon (Head of Leadwork), Chris Battersby and Coral Bell (shop) and Natasha Booth (refectory) have provided the Cathedral with more than 250 years’ service combined. It is exceptionally difficult to say farewell to our staff in this way, and we thank them all for their commitment and dedication to the Cathedral. Each of them leaves a legacy that will live on at the Cathedral.

During the past few months, a huge amount of work has been done to plan for the future, and to respond to the immediate challenges presented by the pandemic. The Chapter has maximised the government’s furlough scheme, and our staff and consultants have carefully looked at all aspects of the Cathedral’s operation. It has become clear that various areas of our institution have become unsustainable without further cuts, and it is with a very heavy heart that the painful decision has been taken to close the Refectory with immediate effect. It would have proved impossible to reopen the Refectory without it leading to a significant deficit at the end of the financial year, and it was therefore impossible to keep the Refectory staff employed. We wish to pay tribute to Susan, Angie, Natasha, Sharon, Michele, John, Emma, Emma and Shirley, who have provided hearty meals, excellent coffee and cake and a warm welcome over many years. Tribute must be paid especially to Susan Scatliffe, who has served the Cathedral diligently and very faithfully for 39 years, and we are exceptionally sad that her long service, and that of others, is ending in this way.

There is more work to be done, and the Chapter is reacting to the constantly changing situation to ensure we can sustain the life of the Cathedral into the future. Please do keep all those who are ending their employment at the Cathedral, and all involved in sustaining our future, in your prayers.

Provide, Protect, Preserve

Lincoln Cathedral has launched an urgent fundraising appeal to secure its future as a place of worship and as an international visitor attraction, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ‘Provide, Protect, Preserve’ recovery appeal has a target of £1.5million to stabilise the Cathedral’s finances.

As a charity, unrestricted funds are incredibly important, as they support every aspect of the Cathedral’s activities – including conservation and music. Our heritage, traditions and people are under threat today more than ever before.

If you are able to do so, please consider giving to the Provide, Protect, Preserve recovery appeal. To find out more or donate to the appeal please visit: https://lincolncathedral.com/recovery-appeal/


Bible readings

Sunday 13 September
Fourteenth Sunday after Trinity

Genesis 50: 15-21
Romans 14: 1-12
Matthew 18 21-35

Evening Prayer
Ezekiel 20: 1-8, 33-44
Acts 20: 17-end


Sunday 20 September
Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity

Jonah 3: 10 – end of 4
Philippians 1: 21-end
Matthew 20: 1-16

Evening Prayer
Ezekiel 33:23, 30-34:10
Acts 26: 1, 9-25


Sunday 27 September
Sixteenth Sunday after Trinity

Ezekiel 18: 1-4, 25-end
Philippians 2: 1-13
Matthew 21: 23-32

Evening Prayer
Ezekiel 37:15-end
1 John 2: 22-end