At morning prayer each day during this Kingdom season we have been using the canticle of the New Creation from the prophet Isaiah.
I will make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.
‘I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King.’
Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters,
‘Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old.
‘Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
‘I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert,
to give drink to my chosen people,
‘The people whom I formed for myself, that they might declare my praise.’
It has been something of a respite amongst the doom laden scripture readings from the apocalyptic writings of the Books of Daniel and Revelation!
Mary Grey in her book The outrageous pursuit of hope, describes how the work of all the great prophets is above all of imagination, full of promise, movement and dynamism.
I would add to that resistance. A refusal to accept and be limited by the current predicament, or any pessimistic narrative. Rather, holding fast to the hope in our hearts through faith.
One of the powerful ways we can enact this hope is in our ability to greet each new day, no matter what challenges it brings, with a deep assurance that God is faithful and with us always. We defiantly hold fast, sometimes by our fingertips, to that the vision and prophetic imagination of a world of justice, peace and joy. Every day becomes holy ground when we can receive it as a gift and look for the signs of blessing and divine presence. Keeping on, keeping on, no matter how weary, broken, or anxious life may be, confident that God is with us in the midst of whatever befalls, provides us with the ability to take that grace-filled, resistant and resilient stance of enacted hope.
May God grant us all the grace to choose to welcome the gift of a new day, knowing that whilst the present may be a volatile and uncertain reality, the day lies open before us with countless opportunity and potential to make a difference and be the enactment of that hopeful vision of a new Creation and a world made whole.
Mary Grey writes: Wherever the flickering sparks are fanned to flame, wherever candles are lit in the darkness, the Spirit-filled servants of God, be they individuals or communities, be they the creatures of the wounded earth itself, reveal that even in the deepest affliction hope is not extinguished.
Worship & Mission
Advent Procession Service
As we will still be in lockdown at the start of Advent, this year’s procession service is being pre-recorded and will be available online on Advent Sunday, 29 November, at 6pm.
It will also be on the Cathedral’s Facebook page.
The order of service will also be available on the Cathedral website at the following link:
The installation of Canon Nick Brown as Precentor and two Chapter members as lay canons – Harvey Dowdy and Stuart Welch – will take place on 18 December at 5.30pm Evensong.
Festival of Lessons and Carols
We plan to have four services this year, from 21 to 24 December at 4pm. These will be ticketed to manage social distancing requirements. Details of how to apply for tickets will following the next Chapter Letter.
Other Christmas Services
Further details of our planned Christmas services will be circulated once we know what is happening after the lockdown.
Carol Hill writes
Many thanks to everyone for their prayers during the last few weeks while both Robert and Paul have been in hospital. Our son, Robert has been in Glenfield hospital, Leicester, and had open-heart surgery to replace a faulty aortic valve. He is recovering well and is now home. Paul was knocked down by a car in the hospital car park and spent two nights in the Leicester Royal Infirmary with concussion and a dislocated shoulder. I have been doing a daily 106 mile round trip to Leicester, so it’s been a bit of a traumatic time for the Hill Family. We really appreciated your prayers, and all the phone calls and emails we’ve had, and thank God for the recovery of both the Hill men.
The Subdean of Lincoln
The Revd Canon John Patrick, has announced that he will leave his role at Lincoln Cathedral on 13 December.
The Subdean’s role encompasses the pastoral care of the Cathedral’s worshipping community and the role of a ‘Master of the Fabric’, overseeing the maintenance and development of the Cathedral and its surrounding properties and precincts.
The Lincoln Cathedral Connected Project has been a highlight of John’s ministry at Lincoln. Connected has been a significant capital project with extensive work on the Cathedral’s West End and North Green, but as importantly the Connected project will allow the Cathedral moving forward to broaden its ministry of welcome, hospitality, teaching, interpretation and community engagement.
Connected is the successful result of a significant number of people working together in partnership from across the Cathedral and beyond. A great deal of the project’s success is due, however, to the creative working relationship that has been forged between John and Dr Anne Irving, who until recently has been Programme Manager to the project. They intend to continue working together in business to provide support to Heritage Organisations in Lincolnshire and further afield.
The Dean of Lincoln, the Very Revd Christine Wilson, said: “John has made a much-valued contribution to the life of the cathedral. He is a man of prayer and a kind pastor who has shared his knowledge and wisdom amongst the cathedral community for close to nine years bringing stability and warmth. He will be greatly missed, and we wish him every success as he embarks on this new venture.”
A collection is taking place for the Subdean. Any contributions should be delivered to the Vergers’ Vestry. (Lincoln Cathedral, Minster Yard, LN2 1PX).
If sending a cheque, please ensure it is made payable to ‘The Corporate Body of Lincoln Cathedral’.
Dorothy Roberts – RIP
Some Cathedral members who have been attending for many years may remember a piano teacher called Dorothy Roberts who died recently. She used to play the piano regularly both at the Cathedral and the Usher Gallery. For more information, please contact Steve Hodcroft 01400 273582.
Sunday 22 November
Christ the King
Ezekiel 34: 11-16, 20-24
Ephesians 1: 15-end
Matthew 25: 31-end
2 Samuel 23: 1-7
Matthew 28: 16-end
Sunday 29 November
First Sunday of Advent
Isaiah 64: 1-9
1 Corinthians 1: 3-9
Mark 13: 24-end
Isaiah 1: 1-20
Matthew 21: 1-13
Sunday 6 December
Second Sunday of Advent
Isaiah 40: 1-11
2 Peter 3: 8-15a
Mark 1: 1-8
1 Kings 22: 1-28