Friday 2 to Monday 5 June
Cathedral Life: A Floral Tribute Flower Festival
Sunday 4 June
Solemn Mass of Pentecost at 11am
Celebrant: Archbishop Malcolm McMahon
Preacher: Cardinal Vincent Nichols
Pentecost Ecumenical Celebration at 3pm
Preacher: Cardinal Vincent Nichols
This weekend will be one of celebration at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King, Liverpool as it marks the Golden Jubilee of the opening of the Cathedral. The Opening Mass was celebrated in the Cathedral on Pentecost Sunday 1967 and as the Church celebrates the Feast in 2017, Crosby-born Cardinal Vincent Nichols will preach at a Solemn Mass celebrated by Archbishop Malcolm McMahon OP.
The festivities begin on Friday morning, 2 June, at 10am with the opening ceremony of a spectacular Flower Festival – 'Cathedral Life: A Floral Tribute'. Every part of the Cathedral will be filled with displays celebrating the feasts and Sacraments of the Church and the life of the Cathedral. More than 20 parish groups and flower clubs from throughout the region have come together to create a golden celebration. The Most Reverend Malcolm McMahon OP will be present as the festival gets under way on Friday morning.
'Cathedral Life: A Floral Tribute' runs from Friday 2 June until Monday 5 June and is open to the public from 10am to 4pm each day (except during Sunday services at 11am and 3pm). Admission is free.
Archbishop McMahon says, "Liverpool’s Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King strikes the eye as it reaches towards the sky. Its crown reminds us that there is a power greater than those on earth and its lantern shines out at night saying that God does not rest but holds us in his care at all times. Sir Frederick Gibberd's very modern design for a Cathedral speaks of the hopes of the catholic people of Liverpool soaring upwards to heaven. Those desires place us alongside our Christian brothers and sisters in the Anglican Cathedral as we jointly witness to Christ rising above our city."
On Sunday 4 June, the Feast of Pentecost, Archbishop McMahon will celebrate Solemn Mass at 11am, during which Crosby-born Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, will preach. The music of the Mass will reflect the history of the Cathedral. Philip Duffy, who held the post of master of the music from 1966 to 1996, has composed a 'Jubilee Mass' for the celebrations, and the fanfare which he wrote for the visit of Pope John Paul II to the Cathedral at Pentecost 1982 will also be played. The Cathedral Choir Association has commissioned a setting of 'Te Deum' by composer Colin Mawby for the 50th anniversary which will be sung at the Offertory of the Mass.
The recessional hymn will be 'Hail Redeemer, King divine!' which was written by Patrick Brennan on the occasion of the laying of the foundation stone for the original Lutyens Cathedral on 5 June 1933.
No tickets are needed for those who wish to attend the Mass.
Cathedral dean, Canon Anthony O'Brien, says, "Countless numbers of people have been part of the Cathedral's story so far – they are the living stones bringing life to this grand modern edifice of concrete and glass. We have a great deal to celebrate and give thanks for at this time and I hope that all these commemorations will renew our appreciation of and support for the Cathedral so that our future will be as blessed as our past."
The Cathedral Choirs have produced an anniversary celebration CD: 'Angels, Saints and Nations Sing' containing music that has played an important role in the life of the Cathedral over the last 50 years. It is available from the Cathedral Music Office and will be on sale after the Solemn Mass.
Christians from across Merseyside will join their church leaders at 3pm on Sunday afternoon to celebrate the Feast of Pentecost with a special Celebration Service in the Metropolitan Cathedral, at which Cardinal Vincent Nichols will again preach. The service will reflect the part played by Liverpool's two Cathedrals in the ecumenical journey, and choirs from both Cathedrals will be taking part. Prior to the service, from 12 noon, the Melling Community Gospel Choir, the Love and Joy Choir and the Pete Caulfield Band will be playing in Hope Street at the Stowell-Brown stage.
The press are welcome to attend any of the events, please contact:
Tel: 0151 522 1007