Prayer for Liverpool
‘Don’t point the camera at the lights!’ During ordination training in Salisbury nearly fifty years ago, we boasted about being the first theological college to have our very own television studio. At the time this was seen as cutting edge. My memory is that it was only really used for recording our first faltering attempts at preaching. A group of students would listen to us in turn, followed by the embarrassment of having to watch our recorded efforts. The group would then offer helpful (or occasionally unhelpful) criticism. When it came to practical matters, the instruction not to point the camera at the lights is all that I can now remember.
In the intervening years, I have not been aware of any skills lying magnificently dormant in this direction. As precentor at Liverpool Cathedral, I have often relished the opportunity to use the largest space for worship in the Anglican Communion. With the Cathedral building no longer available for us, the challenge has been to use the somewhat smaller spaces of our houses to create worship which may help us all to connect with each other and with God.
As the weeks go by, we are becoming more adventurous. Canon Neal’s sermon last Sunday, drawing on Luke’s story of the Road to Emmaus, found him moving through St James’s Gardens as he spoke to us. Mehdi from the Sepas congregation read to us in Farsi. The choristers led prayers with many of them appearing to pay tribute to NHS and front line workers. Music has included recordings made over the years by the Cathedral choir and the grand organ, and we have been treated to some of the spectacular views inside and outside the building. If you have not yet shared the celebration of the Eucharist for last Sunday, 26th April, may I warmly encourage you to do so.
As a parish priest, I used to preside at an early celebration of the Eucharist each Thursday, sometimes attended by just one or two. When filling in the service register afterwards, in the attendance column, I was often tempted to write ‘2 + the whole company of heaven!’ It feels strange, and it is exceptional, for the President to celebrate the sacrament alone, yet this is a dimension of worship in which many are playing a part, some seen or spoken, while others are using their technical skills behind the scenes. In this time of social distance, such an act of worship is there for us all, and it helps us to prepare for when we may meet again around the Lord’s table, with all who stand before God, in earth and heaven.
While you're here:
Why not prepare for next Sunday's worship? Our preparation sheet for adults and for children can be accessed by clicking on the Resources tab of this website: https://www.prayerforliverpool.org/prayer-resources.html.
Prayer for Liverpool
brought to you from Liverpool Cathedral
St James Mount
Liverpool Cathedral is a place of encounter.
Built by the people, for the people, to the Glory of God