Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A Walk in Norwich Cathedral


When it’s cold, wet and dark before tea time how nice it would be to go for a walk inside. You can do it! A handy guide “A Walk Round Norwich Cathedral” is available from the Visitors Desk

As I wandered I stopped to look and wonder, think and pray. It’s not escapism! The Chapel of the Holy Innocents is dedicated to victims of persecution and cruelty in every age!

At St. Luke’s Chapel, I contemplated the beautifully painted reredos that re-tells the story of Christ’s Passion. It was commissioned in 14th Century to celebrate the crushing of the Peasant’s Revolt by the soldier/bishop Henry Despencer. It’s said that Henry returned from his victory to celebrate Holy Communion his hands still red with the blood!

At the Royal Norfolk Regiment’s Chapel I looked at the Book of Remembrance. The 1st Royal Anglian’s who carry the regiment’s tradition today are fresh back from
Afghanistan and not unscathed. I remembered the dead, the grieving, the injured and families!

Finally, sitting in the Bauchun Chapel I found myself gazing equally at John Skelton’s statue of the young Virgin Mary and John Opie’s painting of Presentation of Christ in the Temple. Mary steps forward with eagerness. Simeon proffers the infant Christ as if he was already a sacrifice! I wondered about Temple and cathedral, bloody sacrifices, the joys of motherhood and swords that still pierce mothers’ hearts!

Depressing stuff? It could be, if death had the last word! Revisiting St. Saviour’s and St. Luke’s Chapels, I noticed that both had altar pieces that include the Resurrection. As Christ bursts from the grave, the soldiers are fast asleep! How strange that this world changing event should be missed!

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