Off tonight to the diocesan Festal Evensong in St Mary's. It was supposed to be an event for choirs from all over the diocese to come together, practice and sing Stanford in B together. I think there were reps from 2 choirs other than the Cathedral. The clergy were no better. 3 Cathedral staff (1 acting as thurifer), the Bishop, the Dean and me, plus one priest singing as a tenor with their choir and acting as a superannuated choirboy, rather than a clerk in Holy Orders! So we were put into copes and the non-Cathedral clergy read the lessons. It sounded stunning and all credit to the choirs - the Stanford Te Deum sung as an anthem being a particular treat. I was sat next to the Vice-Provost and got a glorious view of the Palozzi stained glass window over the Resurrection Chapel. In the evening sunlight it is truly stunning.
I giggled rather at the diversity of choir habit worn by the clergy. The Dean and Cathedral priest wore cassock, lace cotta and stole + cope in the Dean's case - very Fortecuse O'Connell! The Bishop and Provost were in cassock-alb and cope - tres Ceremonies of the Modern Roman Rite. The Vice Provost and I were in cassock, Old English surplice and Cope - Parson's Handbook personified! It's odd for me to be part of the least Roman and most Anglican looking section of the clergy collective. I'll be after a Canterbury Cap next!