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Festival of Faith and Music launched by Church Times and Royal School of Church Music

08 December 2023

Andrew Croft/Solent News

Girl choristers sing at the west end of Salisbury Cathedral, during the cathedral’s three “From Darkness to Light”, processions, on 1, 2, and 3

Girl choristers sing at the west end of Salisbury Cathedral, during the cathedral’s three “From Darkness to Light”, processions, on 1, 2, and 3

THE Church Times, in partnership with the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM), has launched a new event, the Festival of Faith and Music, to take place in York Minster from 26 to 28 April 2024.

Through a programme of music and worship, talks and workshops, the festival is designed for clergy and church musicians, and seeks to celebrate church music in all its glory and to send delegates home encouraged, inspired, and equipped with new ideas for using music in worship.

The keynote speaker on the Saturday is the Archbishop of York, in a session called “Tuning forks and orchestras: Music and the mission of God”. Other speakers include Canon Victoria Johnson, the Precentor of York Minster, whose appointment as Dean of Chapel at St John’s College, Cambridge, has recently been announced; Roxana Panufnik, composer of one of the works sung at the Coronation; and Andy Thomas, the author of Resounding Body: Building Christlike church communities through music.

There will be a panel discussion on what makes good worship, chaired by the Dean of York, the Very Revd Dominic Barrington, alongside a series of practical workshops, which include using music to support your church’s engagement with people with dementia, caring for a pipe organ, choosing hymns, and reaching young people through music.

On the Friday, there will be an evening of music and conversation provided by Alexander and Joanna L’Estrange, both of whom write church music besides performing everything from classical to jazz. On the Saturday, the Ebor Singers will present a showcase of the Great Sacred Music resource book, inspired by the free monthly lunchtime concert offered by St Martin-in-the-Fields, in London.

Two internationally renowned singers, James Gilchrist and Andrea Haines, both of whom started singing in parish church choirs, will talk about how it all began. They will then be performing some reflective music in the quire of York Minster, as a preparation for compline.

The new festival builds on the experience of the festivals of Preaching, and of Faith and Literature, and is being run by the same team, in partnership with the RSCM. The director of the RSCM, Hugh Morris, said: ‘‘Music is such an important part of worship, and we have put together a wide range of sessions on topics which we hope will appeal to music leaders, clergy leaders, and church-music lovers alike. I am sure it will be a really engaging and interesting weekend, and am myself already looking forward to attending.”

Full programme and ticketing information can be found at faithandmusic.hymnsam.co.uk

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Forthcoming Events

Green Church Awards

Awards Ceremony: 6 September 2024

Read more details about the awards


Festival of Preaching

15-17 September 2024

The festival moves to Cambridge along with a sparkling selection of expert speakers

tickets available



Festival of Faith and Literature

28 February - 2 March 2025

The festival programme is soon to be announced sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about all festival news.

Festival website


ViSIt our Events page for upcoming and past events 

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