Easter Eve Vigil and Service of Light
Saturday 26 March 2016
19:30 to 23:00
A truly wonderful experience, beginning in darkness with candlelit readings and carols for Easter Eve.
Just as we begin to celebrate the joy of Christmas with the Christmas Eve Crib Service and midnight Eucharist, so too on the eve of Easter we hear the story of God's promise to us to bring freedom and renewal to the world.
This storytelling cycle emerged through thousands of years of history and could last for many hours. However, at St Wilfrid's we hear selected readings interspersed with anthems from the choir and Easter carols for all to sing.
This very ancient and profound liturgy is called the Easter Vigil and Service of Light. In past times (and still on the Orthodox Eastern Churches), the vigil would have gone on all night, watching for the dawn of Easter Day and the joy of thenewsof the resurrection in the Gospel reading.
The new Pascal (Easter) candle is lit from a fire by the door and processed through the darkened church, followed by all the people. We sing 'The Light of Christ' three times as the candlelight dispels the darkness. All of the other candles are lit as we celebrate in music and song.
During the night, new Christians would in the past have been Baptised, ready to share Holy Communion at dawn.
The evening begins at 7:30pm and gradually builds up through story and music to the great announcement of the resurrection, with joyous music and choral singing from Music Makers choir.
St Wilfrid's Church,