By DAVID FREEZER
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Angelic voices and Christmas carols filled Norwich Cathedral last night for Marie Curie Cancer Care’s annual Lights to Remember Service.
The nave of the cathedral was packed out for the service, which is organised in conjunction with the EDP.
It is a special service to remember lost loved ones, dedicate a light in their memory on the cathedral’s Christmas tree and to raise money for Marie Curie Cancer Care.
All the money raised on the night will go towards funding Marie Curie nurses in Norfolk to be able to care for terminally ill people in their own homes.
The appeal has so far this year enabled Marie Curie to recruit an additional 10 nurses for Norfolk.
The service was led by the Very Reverend Graham Smith, Dean of Norwich Cathedral, who said: “Many of us come here this evening also to remember before God our departed loved ones, whose final days were made easier by hospice care and devoted nursing.
“As Christmas draws near, in confidence and humility we bring before God the praises of our favourite hymns and carols and offer him our loving service.”
The choir of Norwich Lower School, directed by Nicky Dunnett, provided the vocals for the evening with a range of hymns and carols.
Readings were delivered by EDP editor, Nigel Pickover, and High Sheriff of Norfolk, Henry Cator, amongst others, before attentions turned to the main event of the night.
As the hymn O Come All Ye Faithful was sung by the congregation, Rev Smith, Sheriff of Norwich, John Jennings, and Marie Curie Cancer Care patron Dr Iain Brooksby made their way to the back of the nave.
There they stopped at the cathedral’s 25ft Christmas tree, the Tree of Lights, and the congregation turned to watch as the lights were switched on for the festive season.
The sheriff said: “With very great pleasure, I inaugurate this Tree of Lights. Each light represents an act of remembrance and generosity and I am honoured to switch them on and light up the tree.”
As the lever was pulled and the beautiful Christmas tree was illuminated, Rev Smith delivered an Act of Thanksgiving to mark the lighting of the tree.
He said: “We give thanks for tireless service to the sick and dying by Marie Curie Cancer Care.”