The Norfolk and Norwich Christian community website

Hundreds gather to mark Prisons Week

PrisonsWeekBarsFour hundred worshippers gathered in Norwich Cathedral last Sunday evening (November 26) for an ecumenical service to mark the end of Prisons Week.
The service was organised by the combined chaplaincy teams of HMP Norwich, HMP Wayland and HMP Blundeston. The sermon was preached by The Rt Revd David Atkinson, Bishop of Thetford, and the Governor of Norwich Prison, James Shanley, read the Gospel.
Dignitaries in attendance included the Sheriff of Norwich, John Drake, the Chairman of Breckland District Council, Councillor Roy Rudling, and the Chairman of Broadland District Council, Councillor Michael Snowling.
Hymns and worship songs were led by Stoke Holy Cross Worship Group and the Salvation Army Band and the Lord's Prayer was sung by the Upper Tas Valley Choir. Prison Chaplains read a tapestry of prisoners' stories, and performed a drama written by the Rev Rosemary Wakelin, Methodist minister of Holt and a member of the Norwich Prison Chaplaincy Team. Other denominations represented included Baptists, Pentecostals and Roman Catholics, and Jewish and Buddhist Chaplains also contributed to the event.
"It was a wonderfully prayerful occasion," said Norwich Prison Chaplain Rev. Judith Wilson. "We were delighted by the size of the congregation, which shows that there are many beyond the prison walls who care about the needs of prisoners, and want to help us minister to them. My great hope now is that this good will will help us in our plans to set up a Community Chaplaincy in Norwich, which will provide support for the families of those in prison, and help prisoners cope with the difficulties they face after they are released."
The Prisons Week website is at www.prisonsweek.org/about.asp

Story by Ruth Brett

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