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What was the origin of this ceremony on Ascension Day?

26 June 2020

Email if you have any answers to the questions, below


Your questions:

When I was a chorister at Wakefield Cathedral in the 1970s, a curious liturgical tradition took place during the eucharist on Ascension Day. At the words in the Nicene Creed “And ascended into heaven”, a server would extinguish the Paschal candle. Where did this tradition originate? Does it come from Percy Dearmer and St Mary’s, Primrose Hill? I imagine that, with the advent of the 50 days of Easter, the tradition has all but died out, although Common Worship: Time and Seasons makes provision for the extinguishing of the Paschal candle at the conclusion of the Pentecost liturgy.

J. R.


Because Peter denied Jesus three times, and Jesus asked Peter three times whether he loved him, many people make a connection between the two. Am I the only one not to be convinced by this? In Joshua 1, Joshua is told three times by the Lord to be strong and courageous, with no previous three occasions to draw upon. Is this a relevant comparison?

J. P.


If public worship is restored, will it be lawful for the over-70s to be prohibited from attending (as proposed by a local vicar)?

M. H.


A priest aged 84 has been exercising an amazing retirement ministry to people who live in an inner-city area of social deprivation. Is there any form of recognition that the church or his diocese can give him for this work?

G. S.


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