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Norwich church encourages city workers in lunch hour 

St Andrew’s Church in Norwich's city centre is providing an oasis of peace and a place of faith for city workers in their lunch hour. Jenny Seal reports. 

St Andrew’s Church, neighbouring Norwich's Cinema City and opposite St Andrew’s Brew House, has made it its mission to support people working in the city centre, making it easy for them to access a place of faith.

Each Tuesday the church hosts a Daybreak prayer service, starting at 8.10am followed by coffee and croissants, to set people up for work at 9am.  On Thursday lunchtimes from 1.05pm there are City Talks with a 20 minute Bible talk, open discussion and good coffee.  And special midweek services are held at Easter, Christmas and Harvest. 

Vicar Rev Martin Young (pictured) said: “People actually live so much of their lives in the workplace and it’s very easy to have faith sectioned off into Sunday mornings.  We want to encourage Christians during the week in their workplace, and to encourage one another to live the life Monday to Friday as well as Sunday. 

“And we also want to provide a means of outreach for Christians.  If you work in Norwich, your colleague on the next desk might live in Great Yarmouth.  There’s no way you are going to be able to invite them to church on Sunday, but you might invite them to a midweek event in the city.”

On Thursday, March 29 the church hosted its Easter Service for the business community.  The 40 minute service, starting at 1.05pm fits within a lunch hour and offers a complete break from the pace of working life.

Around 60 people gather together for the service in the bright medieval church.  The music is glorious, arranged by composer and award winning recording artist Roger Mayor.  The ensemble of Roger on keyboards, Linda Ellis and Ben Payne on violin, and Naomi Brocklehurst on the flute accompany Sue Kent’s outstanding soprano voice which soars and fills the high-ceilinged building.

The 10-minute Gospel message given by curate Rev Will Warren is clear, warm and peppered with quotes from famous people. Stephen Girling, a Director of SG Wealth Management offers prayers set in the context of work life covering the wellbeing of employees, Brexit, changing legislation and zero hours contracts. 

Every element is accessible, impressively done and relevant to city working. Even the sausage rolls, hot cross buns and coffee served at the end are delicious.   

For further details of St Andrew's Church services and groups for city workers click here.

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