Submitted by george.somers@… on Tue, 01/30/2024 - 11:52

The 369th Clergy Support Trust Festival Service brings together three world-class choirs under the magnificent dome of St Paul's Cathedral on Tuesday 7 May 2024, 5pm.

You can now book your free tickets for the Service online. For those who'd like to join us for our charity Festival Dinner, a two-course buffet with wine at the beautiful Plaisterers' Hall venue, book your £75 tickets through the same form.

Be a part of history

In 1655, concerned with the welfare of clergy, their children and widows, merchants of the City of London and the sons of clergy held a Festival to raise funds to support them.

369 years later, a great deal has changed, but Clergy Support Trust's mission to serve those who serve remains the same. In 2023, we supported over 2,700 clergy households, including 1 in 5 of all serving Church of England and Church in Wales clergy.

The Festival Service is a key staple in both our own history and choral music tradition, with composers such as Edward Elgar composing arrangements specifically for our Service ('Give unto the Lord', 1914).

Pausing the Festival on only two occasions across four centuries - during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, and during the 1941 London Blitz - the Service is a moment of reflection, celebration and thanksgiving for the lives and ministry of clergy and their families.

Image
The Choir of St Paul's Cathedral, singing beside the font at the West Door of the Cathedral.

Image
St Paul's Cathedral Choir from above.

Be moved

Even after 369 years, hearing three world-class cathedral choirs performing together is still a very rare treat.

Few other choral music events bring together three choirs in a single venue, with the exception of special occasions of historic significance, such as the coronation of King Charles III.

This year, Durham Cathedral Choir and Rochester Cathedral Choirs join St Paul's Cathedral Choir in a majestic act of worship. Meet the choirs here.

“It is a rare and wonderful joy to work with such incredible choirs each year, and even more so when you are part of an almost unbroken line of choirs singing together under the dome of St Paul’s stretching back over nearly 370 years.”

Andrew Carwood MBE
Director of Music, St Paul's Cathedral

Be inspired

We have been privileged to welcome hundreds of engaging, influential speakers to give the sermon at our Festival Service.

This year, we are delighted to welcome The Most Revd Andrew John, Archbishop of Wales and Bishop of Bangor. Archbishop Andrew grew up in Aberystwyth, and has a particular interest in church growth, evangelism and the Welsh language.

"I am delighted to be preaching at the Festival Service, and look forward to hearing the singing of three incredible choirs. St Paul's is a beautiful space in which to deliver a Sermon."

The Most Revd Andrew John
Archbishop of Wales and Bishop of Bangor

The last Archbishop of Wales we welcomed to the Festival Service was The Rt Revd Barry Morgan in 2011, and prior to this was The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Rowan Williams, later Archbishop of Canterbury, in 2001.

Read the 2023 sermon from the 368th Festival Service, given by the Bishop of Gloucester, The Rt Revd Rachel Treweek.

Image
Andrew John, smiling and facing the camera.

How to book your tickets

We look forward to welcoming so many of you to the Festival on Tuesday 7 May 2024, 5pm. Tickets are free.

If you already have a connection to the Trust - perhaps as a Governor, Steward, senior clergy or you are on our mailing list - you will have received an email with your personalised link. You can use this link to book your tickets for both the Service and the Dinner.

If this is your first interaction with the Trust, welcome! You can book your tickets through the link below.

Book now

If you'd like to not only attend the Service, but to take part too, why not consider becoming a Steward of the Festival? They play a historic ceremonial role, process as part of the Service, have priority access to reserved dome seating, and have their support acknowledged in our Order of Service.

Become a Steward