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Holy Week and Easter at Norwich Cathedral

Norwich Cathedral marked the start of Holy Week with a Palm Sunday procession through the city and the sublime sound of two different settings of the St John Passion sung in the Cathedral’s centuries-old surrounds.

It was the beginning of a busy programme of services and events open to all at Norwich Cathedral this Holy Week and Easter, including musical meditations, reflections and all the traditional services as well as an organ recital and an Easter Experience family event.

On Sunday morning, the Cathedral’s Clergy and Choir joined together with members of St Peter Mancroft Church outside The Forum for the traditional Litany of the Palms before processing through Norwich. Accompanied by a donkey, the procession wove its way around the city’s streets before arriving at Norwich Cathedral for the 10.30am Sung Eucharist.

Saturday saw Norwich Cathedral Choir, along with Norwich Baroque and soloists, sing Bach’s poignant musical masterpiece St John Passion which was first performed 300 years ago in Leipzig, Germany, on Good Friday 1724. Meanwhile, on the afternoon of Palm Sunday, Norwich Cathedral Chamber Choir performed Bob Chilcott’s moving setting of St John Passion which was first performed at Wells Cathedral in 2013.

The Dean of Norwich, the Very Revd Dr Andrew Braddock, said: “The Cathedral’s services and events, that began with Palm Sunday, reflect the universal themes of hope and loss, joy and suffering, forgiveness and redemption that lie at the heart of Jesus’ death and resurrection. All are welcome to share in our journey through Holy Week to Easter.”

Monday saw clergy from across the Diocese gather at the Cathedral for the Chrism Eucharist and the first of the Cathedral’s evening Holy Week reflections and musical meditations also took place that evening.

Holy Week Reflections with the Revd Catherine Williams will also take place at 7pm Eucharists on Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 March and at 1pm on Good Friday.

The Tuesday and Wednesday reflections will also link to musical meditations which follow at 8pm. Tuesday’s musical meditation will see the Cathedral’s girl choristers sing Pergolesi’s setting of the Stabat Mater and on Wednesday the Lay Clerks and Choral Scholars of Norwich Cathedral Choir will sing Tallis and Parsley’s The Lamentations of Jeremiah.

As we move closer to Easter Day, the times for the Cathedral’s main services are as follows:

  • Maundy Thursday (28 March)
    Eucharist of the Last Supper, 7pm
  • Good Friday (29 March)
    At the Foot of the Cross, 11am
    Good Friday Meditation, 1pm
    Solemn Liturgy, 2pm
  • Holy Saturday (30 March)
    Easter Vigil and Confirmations, 8pm
  • Easter Sunday (31 March)
    Festal Eucharist, 10.30am
    Festal Evensong, 3.30pm

On Easter Monday (1 April), the Cathedral’s Master of Music Ashley will give a free organ recital at 11am.

Families are also invited to take part in a free Easter Experience Family Event from 10am until 2pm on Wednesday 3 April and enjoy crafts, games and activities based on the Easter story.

For the full details of Norwich Cathedral’s services and events throughout Holy Week and Easter visit cathedral.org.uk/easter