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Week of February 26

If you have been around the building lately you will be well aware that we are celebrating Nuit blanche from 6pm until 2 am this Saturday

Railings and chairs have been taken out of the St John of Jerusalem chapel in readiness for the art exhibition featuring paintings and photographs, many the work of Cathedral parishioners. The Baptistery on the other side of the chancel will be the site of the NFB movie La mémoire des anges which will be shown on a loop all night – a fascinating look back at Montreal 50, 60 even 70 years ago. The movie is famous and has won prizes.

The evening’s events begin with activities for children – snow painting, music-making and games. Meanwhile the bell ringers will try to sail through their Bob Minor changes under the leadership of Paul Kennington. I especially hope some of you will be able to join the audience from 7 to 7:45 for a dramatic (and funny) look at Montreal in winter. Paul Hopkins, former member of the cathedral and well-known actor is coming all the way from Ontario to direct this event as well as the dramatic reading of the creation story from Genesis later in the evening. It would be really nice to support him. Drama will be followed by a concert from Adleisia, a women’s choir whose members sang with Concerto Della Donna until Iwan Edwards retired. Next James Roberts and his horn octet play from 8:30 to 9, when you can join in a bell ringing workshop led by Paul. Modern organ music played by Alex and Adrian will keep us all awake between 9:30 and 10. Patrick has heard them play both pieces in concert and says that they are fabulous (both the pieces and the organists) During the next half hour, 10 – 10:30, flautists Jonathan Bailey and Ben Stuchbery will charm away all the stress of this winter with some classical music.

But you can’t go home yet! For the next hour and a half poetry and jazz will alternate to intrigue, amuse and stimulate our minds and senses. Many of the poets are Cathedral members as is Emma of the beautiful voice. At midnight we will turn the building back into a spiritual oasis with a prayerful monastic office sung to plain chant. The spiritual mood will remain, but the tempo will quicken with a dramatic reading of Genesis chapter 1 after the office. The meditative late-night mood will return however with Ben, Jonathan and Erica playing a programme of music for flute, violin and guitar.

And then the night will be over as we gather outside the building holding candles in the snow. The candles will be blown out, the final drops of hot chocolate drunk, the number of visitors tallied and so home to bed, except for those cleaning up in preparation for Sunday’s services. If some people seem a little sleepy in church, please be forgiving!

And, in case you’re so sleepy you sleep in on Sunday…

March 1st Evening Eucharist for Lent at 6pm – What – or who – will you encounter this Lent as you prepare to enter the story of Christ’s death and resurrection?  Join us for a meditative Lenten service with Taizé chant, a didgeridoo, and an imaginative journey into the wilderness with Jesus. .

Registration is now open for the parish retreat “Living the Life of Prayer,” April 30-May 3. Information may be found at the back of the church or here. Even if you can’t go to the retreat do click on this link. Vivian’s poster is a breathtakingly beautiful reminder that winter will end and prayer does bring peace.

If you want a silent retreat sooner, a few places are open March 13-15 at La Maison de Prière, Longueuil. $130 includes meals and lodging. Call Paul Empsall (514) 626-9462 or visit


Here are some quick reminders of events detailed on the web site:

Pain, partage et prière : The French Bible study group meets March 8 at 2:00pm in St Anselm’s Chapel.

Hungry Minds: Bible study and supper for students and young adults meets every Wednesday from 6-9 pm in the Undercroft. See Rhonda for details.

Lenten Book Study led by Eric Beresford begins this Tuesday March 3 at 7pm in the Undercroft Supper will be served at 7pm and the course will begin at 7:45 and end by 9:30.  For the first session, Eric would like everyone to have read the Gospel of Mark (as was previously suggested in one of the weekly spiritual practice offerings) Please also come to the session having read the first chapter of Meeting God in Mark.  

Sundays in Lent – gather at 11:45 in the chapel for a presentation on various topics of environmental concern.  This Sunday:SJAG will discuss food and the environment.  Next week March 8: Craig Sauvé, Projet Montréal transit critic, on public transportation. Meg Graham will discuss Maude Barlowe’s latest work on March 15th and a representative from Divest McGill is coming to speak on March 22nd.

Seniors’ Pot-luck Lunch Tuesday March 3  at noon in the Hollis Lounge. Please confirm attendance with the Cathedral office by March 2.

L’oasis musicale concert this Saturday, An Afternoon of Dance and Fantasy, will be given by pianist Elias-Axel Pettersson.  Visit Donal Ward’s blog: for links to the Cathedral services, L’Oasis Musicale and Nuit blanche concerts. He provides all kinds of good information about the music being performed.

You can also read this month’s Montreal Anglican on line.

Some people at Forum expressed interest in being  part of the count of homeless people taking place on Tuesday, March 24. Go to this site to sign up:

The Cathedral book group has changed the date of their next meeting from March 29 to April 12 at 7 pm when they will be discussing The Circle by Dave Eggars. On May 24 the book will be Life after Life by Kate Atkinson. We will provisionally discuss Thaliad on June 9. Jane Aitkens has books for sale, $10

The new forum for 2015 had its first meeting on Tuesday. Tyson Røsberg is the new secretary. François Morin continues as Chair. Forum meets on the third Tuesday of every month. All parishioners are  welcome to attend.

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