click here for gadget for god  
about the ship sign up for our newsletter
community the mystery worshipper gadgets for god caption competition foolishness features ship stuff
mystery worshipper home reports from the uk and ireland reports from the usa reports from australia and new zealand reports from canada reports from elsewhere famous and infamous reports comments and corrections
the mystery worshipper
See our archive of reports

UK & Ireland
Oz & NZ
If you would like to become a Mystery Worshipper, start here.

2508: Canterbury Cathedral, England

Read this report | Other comments

25 August 2013

Enjoyed the report on the installation of the new archbishop.

In late 1995, my parents and I attended a Sunday evensong service, and it's made me yearn to return to a Canterbury service ever since. It was a small service, but congregants were invited to pass through and be seated in the quire, so I was only three spaces away from the (world class) cathedral choir. To this day it remains the most beautiful music I have ever heard, and the chance to sing along with them was humbling.

If you get a chance to return to Canterbury, I'd recommend making sure you can work in an evensong service!

James Anderson

27 March 2013

Id just like to comment on the report of the enthronement of the Archbishop of Canterbury and in particular the comment about the sign language interpreters.

Any sign language interpreter in any situation will sign everything that is said or sung, whether printed in the order of service or not, as they are providing a service for people who may not be able actually to hear the choir singing or to follow in the order of service in the first place.

I was disappointed at the implication that their signing of the Te Deum was a distraction or somehow redundant, as they worked hard and did an extremely good job of translating, at sight, the language of the service into the totally different language of BSL.

Hannah Lewis

The Wife of Bath replies:

I am very sorry that you understood my comment about the sign-language interpreter to be negative. That was certainly not my intention.

The phrase I used was "I was amused", and I meant that in the nicest possible way. I could just as easily have said "I was impressed."

There were many distractions in the cathedral, largely because I wasn't able to see much of the activity up around the altars, so my attention wandered. I was genuinely impressed at how the two BSL interpreters, a man and a woman, just kept going. I didn't know who they were signing to, or how many of you, but it was a positive distraction, as I sometimes tried to follow what they were saying. It gave me something to look at and I wasn't complaining about it at all!

Please accept my apology for any offence I inadvertently caused you.

26 March 2013

Your report on the installation service for the Archbishop of Canterbury refers to the cast in chronological order but fails sadly to mention the three young people who led the prayers of intercession. On such a fully scripted event they were beautiful prayers and beautifully presented.

Alan Hurrell

[Editor's note: The young people in question were Primrose Northrop, Nathan Wilson and Hannah Worthen.]

The Wife of Bath replies:

Our custom with Mystery Worship reports is to list the names only of clergy, or lay persons in the church's employ, such as the organist. I mentioned Evangeline by name because she fulfilled a function usually filled by a man, and a clergyman at that. With a cast of hundreds if not exactly thousands, I had to draw the line somewhere. And from where I was sitting, I couldn't actually see the intercessors.

At any rate, the names were listed in the (linked) order of service, and the editor has kindly listed them here now.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

please give to the floating fund
Easter 2010 reports
Easter 2010
From Yunnan in China to Louisville in Kentucky, we report on Easter services, 2010. Read here.
camino pilgrimage
The Mystery Pilgrim
One of our most seasoned reporters makes the Camino pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Read here.
follow ship of fools on twitter
buy your ship of fools postcards
sip of fools mugs from your favourite nautical website
      ship of fools