On Sunday December 13, St Bartholomew’s Parish, Stranmillis, hosted the annual Carol Service for Belfast’s Lord Lieutenant.
The socially distanced event was attended by Fionnuala Jay-O’Boyle, Lord Lieutenant for the County Borough of Belfast, and her deputies. The esteemed guests represented the many sectors in society who have been working hard throughout the ongoing health crisis.
The Vice Lord Lieutenant, Sir Nigel Hamilton, on behalf of the Lord Lieutenant, thanked the invited guests for all they had done over these last nine months.
The Lord Mayor of Belfast and the High Sheriff were present. Leading members of the medical, nursing, social care, political, military and policing sectors were also in attendance.
The wider church was represented by senior church figures including the Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, the Vicar General of the Diocese of Down and Connor and the Secretary of the Methodist Church in Ireland.
The lessons were read by some of the Deputy Lieutenants and young Sea and Army Cadets. Music was led by the choir of St Bartholomew’s, accompanied by several solo pieces on the harp, Katie Patience; organ, Mark Wardil and voice, Army Cadet McMullan.
The Bishop of Connor, the Rt Rev George Davison, offered a seasonal Blessing to close the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. A retiring collection was held for Belfast Cathedral’s Black Santa Appeal.