Our cathedrals have been celebrated in prayer every day this week on Radio 4 ahead of the first national Cathedrals Conference, Sacred Space to be held in Manchester Cathedral later this month.
The first national conference, called Sacred Space: Common Ground, will see every English Cathedral represented when over 420 clergy and key lay members gather in Manchester Cathedral for the four day conference.
It will be facilitated by the newly appointed Third Church Estates Commissioner, Eve Poole. Eve, a key member of the conference, has been on Radio 4 every morning this week with prayer and reflections on our cathedrals ahead of the conference start date on September 17.
“England’s cathedrals are a vital national resource, and my series of cathedral prayers for Radio 4 illustrate just some facets of their extraordinary contribution.
“I welcome this ground-breaking conference, which offers an unparalleled opportunity for the cathedral community to learn and grow together,” she added.
The main speakers have now been confirmed and include Sheffield Mayor, Dan Jarvis, Nick Spencer of think-tank, Theos; journalist and political economist, Will Hutton; First Estates Commissioner, Loretta Minghella; Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, Dame Fiona Reynolds; Professor of Islamic and Interreligious studies, Mona Siddique; former director of the National Portrait Gallery, Sandy Nairne; Labour life peer, Baroness Maeve Sherlock; and Dr Guy Hayward from the British Pilgrimage Trust.
The conference has been organised by the Association of English Cathedrals. Funding from Allchurches Trust has enabled the widest possible participation from cathedrals by offering bursaries to those less resourced.
There will be a video message from the Archbishop of Canterbury, an address by the Archbishop of York, and a wide range of preachers and spiritual leaders from across the traditions, including preacher and writer, Fr Timothy Radcliffe; and Fr Michael Lapsley, South African priest and social justice campaigner maimed in a letter bomb attack while living in exile in Zimbabwe.
The Very Revd Adrian Dorber, Dean of Lichfield Cathedral and chair of the Association of English Cathedrals, said:
“This conference has been a long time ambition of ours, and we are proud to be able to offer such authentic and distinguished speakers and contributors from across the spectrum.
“We hope they will offer resource and new wisdom to benefit all cathedrals while the conference offers us all a splendid opportunity to work together and draw renewed confidence and strength.”
Thurs 6th: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0bh7k51
And visit the Sacred Space website here