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Mothers’ Union wants a photo of your banner!

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The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many long-anticipated events to be postponed or even cancelled and as an organisation with a large number of older members, the Mothers’ Union in the Diocese of Norwich has decided to move its annual Festival Service from the Cathedral this autumn into its members’ homes. Resources are being prepared so that members can join in with a time of worship in their own homes or as small groups; an ‘at-home festival service’.

A big part of the annual cathedral service is the procession of branch banners through the nave of the Cathedral. It’s always a spectacular sight as the brightly coloured and intricately embroidered masterpieces are held high for all to see. But with no cathedral service this year, the trustees came up with the idea of bringing the banners together in a virtual way.

Diocesan Chaplain, the Revd Andrew Whitehead, said, “It occurred to the trustees that we should really have a digital archive of all the amazing Mothers’ Union banners in our churches, and bringing them together for our ‘at-home’ festival service seemed like a brilliant opportunity. We’re asking people to send in pictures of their banners so we can assemble a visual montage which we’ll circulate with the worship resources for our ‘at-home’ festival service.”

The trustees are asking all Mothers’ Union branches to get their cameras out and snap a photo or two of their precious banners, sending the best ones in to the Mothers’ Union office at For churches where there is no longer a branch, we’d love to receive pictures of the banners that still hang there, from local parishioners and residents. The photos will be used in a montage and will also form part of a new digital archive on the Diocesan Mothers’ Union website.

Diocesan President, Val Ovenden, said, “What a wonderful opportunity has been provided for all our members to join together in this ‘at-home’ service. Let us thank God that we can as always celebrate our festival!”

As the plans for the ‘at-home’ festival service are finalised, members will receive a pack of resources for the special day, including a montage of all the banner photos people send in. So, if there’s a Mothers’ Union banner hanging in your local church, please get snapping and send in your pictures before the deadline on Wednesday 16 September 2020.