Bells ring across the city to start Centenary Celebrations

9th June 2014

600 people gathered at Sheffield Cathedral on 8 June to see the official start of the Diocese of Sheffield’s Centenary Year Celebrations.

The event started at 16.00 with the Bishop of Sheffield, the Rt Revd Dr Steven Croft, blessing the new gates and entrance of the recently refurbished Cathedral.  Dressed in full robes, a colourful display of clergy from parishes across the Diocese then processed into the building with the bells ringing across the city centre.

During the service, Bishop Steven used his sermon to look back on 100 years as a Diocese, saying, “There is so much to remember and so much to celebrate in this last one hundred years of the Church family in this place, for what else is a Diocese except a family.”

“Through the last one hundred years in these places, the Church has proclaimed and lived the gospel of Jesus Christ. That’s what we celebrate today”.  Then commenting “It’s a story of the creation and renewal of church buildings like this one.  I want to pay tribute today to all who have worked so hard and given so generously to the magnificent refurbishment of this Cathedral.”

The 600-strong congregation was made up of representatives from parishes across South Yorkshire and East Riding.  Past clergy members were present, with the former Bishop of Sheffield, the Rt Revd Jack Nicholls also addressing the gathered crowd.

Dr Croft paid tribute to all those, past and present, that make up the living body of the Diocese:

“The story of the Diocese is the story of thousands of parish clergy serving in urban and rural areas with skill and courage and faithfulness.  It’s the story of chaplains in hospitals and prisons, universities and schools.”

Bishop Steven went on to say:

“Whatever your part in that great story, thank you for all you have given and all that you give.  May God bless you for hearing his call, for joining your story to the story of this Diocese in the past, in the present and, God willing into the future as we move forward together”

The event also marked the end of major refurbishment works for Sheffield Cathedral.  Known as The Gateway Project, works have been ongoing for some time.  It is also 100 years since the building we now know as the cathedral was elevated from parish church to cathedral status.

The centenary service marked the first of a number of events taking place throughout the Sheffield Diocese region.

The centenary celebrations will conclude with an event back at the Cathedral in November, attended by the Archbishop of York that will end with a firework display.

The full sermon from Bishop Steven is available at: http://bishopofsheffield.blogspot.co.uk/2014/06/i-am-bread-of-life.html

A selection of pictures are available here.

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