Carol Service 2014
Our annual celebration of Christmas
The annual St Augustine’s Priory Carol Service is at the centre of our celebrations for Christmas. Every part of our community joins together – girls, staff and parents, to reflect on and observe this most important time of year.
This year on Tuesday 9th December, with the kind permission of Abbot Martin Shipperlee, we once again gathered at Ealing Abbey. As always, the Abbey was packed with girls, parents, staff and friends old and new of St Augustine’s Priory. After the procession of the choirs and puppets (representing characters from the Nativity) through the darkened Abbey, Fr Thomas opened the event with prayer and there followed a Service of music, readings and images which concentrated us all on the meaning and spirituality of Christmas.
Mr Martin, our new Director of Music, had put together a moving programme of carols old and new interpreted beautifully by the choirs, including the Chapel Singers, soloists, orchestra and jazz band with the congregation joining in with gusto throughout the Service. Mr Martin’s fellow members of the Music Department were, as always, a strong support and all worked together to bring us a Service of joy and thoughtfulness. The puppets, new for this year, had been constructed and staged in a collaboration between the Art and Drama Departments and presented a striking visual impact situated behind the orchestra and choir.
A theme for the Service was ‘1914’ and girls and staff had written poems expressive of this which were interspersed with the carols and Biblical readings throughout the evening. The readers gave us exquisite interpretations of the readings, both Biblical and secular, which balanced well with the chosen music.
After the Blessing by Fr Thomas, we ended the Service by all joining together to sing ‘O Come, all ye Faithful’ and then the Headteacher, Mrs Sarah Raffray, gave an address, thanking all who had taken part and wishing us all the peace and joy of Christmas. She also spoke of our two Christmas Charities, the Ealing Food Bank and the CAFOD Ebola Crisis Appeal, and urged our support for these two very worthwhile causes. And support them the congregation did! The leaving collection raised over £1,100 – thank you very much for your generosity.
Whether girl, parent or member of staff, thank you to all Augustinians who took part in this year’s Carol Service, making it a lovely event to begin our Christmas celebrations.
The photographs of the Carol Service were taken by two members of the Photography Club, Kiranjeet Sandhu of Upper VI and Aneae Rodriguez of Upper VA.Priory Post