Sunday July 5 was the first time since lockdown that we could celebrate Holy Communion in the cathedral together, the first time that Children’s Church could meet for real, the next step in our journey through these strange times.
It followed a special service on the evening of Saturday July 4 – the first act of public worship since March – led by the Bishop of Leeds, The Rt Rev Nick Baines, in which the paschal (Easter) candle was lit and carried in to the darkened church, symbolizing the resurrection and the light of Christ coming in to the world.
The Dean of Ripon, the Very Rev John Dobson said: “It’s been wonderful to see the cathedral community gathered together once more in the cathedral itself.
“It’s amazing how soon we get used to arrangements that just a few months ago we couldn’t have imagined; the spreading out of chairs; the use of hand sanitiser; receiving communion in one kind only and not singing hymns yet!
“Even so the atmosphere has been tremendous with a great spirit of celebration as we have taken this significant step as restrictions are eased.”
Sunday’s 10.30am Eucharist was featured by the Daily Mail on-line and heralded a return to the cathedral’s usual schedule of services on Sunday at 8am, 9.30am, 10.30am, 12.30 and 3.30pm. The 10.30am service will continue to be streamed – 100 people attended virtually on Sunday – along with evensong on Thursdays and a mid-week reflection by the dean; these can all be accessed through the front page of the cathedral website, where you will also find a full list of services being held in the cathedral.