Carol services at Peterborough Cathedral
16 December 2015
The School held its triennial Peterborough Cathedral carol services in the last week of term before the Christmas break, with the Lower School service on Thursday and the Middle/Upper School service on Friday.
The majesty of the cathedral always creates a special atmosphere, and this year was no exception. The lessons were read with poise and confidence by Heads of Houses, the Head Boy and Girl, the Master of Jerwoods and the Headmaster respectively. These were interlaced with complementary carols from congregation and choir and punctuated by a brief address telling the timeless story of God’s salvation for humankind.
Mr Tom Constable, Chaplaincy Fellow, spoke in the Thursday address of the mystery of John chapter 1, urging everyone to wrestle with it even if it is not easy to understand. On the Friday, the School Chaplain Rev Alex Aldous spoke on the concept of time’ – whilst on the surface there may seem to be apparent awkwardness in the timing of certain aspects of the Christmas story and our own preparedness for the season, nevertheless God breaks through into history and becomes flesh at his appointed hour, and there is then the call for us to make time for him in all our busyness.
In Thursday’s service, the Jerwoods Choir contributed a lovely selection of choral carols, opening with the Director of Music’s ethereal arrangement of the plainsong Creator of the starry height, and finishing with Bob Chilcott’s beautiful setting of Midwinter, featuring the flute playing of Jessica Carr. On Friday, the Chapel Choir bookended the service with two Oakham School commissions – one from Paul Mealor (Matin Responsory, first heard in 2012), and a moving new work by Will Todd heard after the prayers (God so loved the world). As well as the excellent choral singing, there were also outstanding solos from Alex Bower-Brown, Edwin Jack , Hannah, Kitty and Morgan.