11 Dec 2013
A Service of Thanksgiving for the 600th Anniversary of the University of St Andrews was held at Westminster Abbey on Tuesday 10th December 2013.
The service was conducted by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall who said in his Bidding: ‘At Westminster, we remember 1413 as the year when the king of England, Henry IV, taken ill here, died in the Jerusalem Chamber. His reign had been turbulent: “By…indirect crook’d ways [he] met his crown; and…troublesome it sat upon [his] head”. In Europe, the times were in turmoil: the papacy divided, the king of Scots imprisoned in the Tower of London.
‘Turmoil is a necessary condition for growth. In St Andrews, that same year, a papal decree nurtured a seed that has grown into a mighty tree of learning. In Advent, the Church invites us to face our own confusion, the turmoil of our times, and our need of peace and of salvation; and to look forward with hope and trust to the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and to his coming judgement.
‘So we pause, looking back and looking forward, remembering and hoping, in the presence of almighty God, who unites in himself all time and eternity, to praise him and to give thanks for what has been, and to pray with confidence for what will come.’
Professor Louise Richardson, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, University of St Andrews, read Proverbs: 1-4; 22-31. The Right Honourable Sir Menzies Campbell CH CBE QC MP, Chancellor, University of St Andrews, read from A Papal Bull Establishing The Great University. Alan Chalmers, Chairman, Service of Thanksgiving Steering Committee, read Isaiah 9: 1-7. James North, Chairman, University of St Andrews Alumni Club, London, read St Matthew 1: 18-23.
The Address was given by the Right Reverend and Right Honourable Dr Richard Chartres KCVO, Lord Bishop of London.
Prayers were led by the Reverend Dr James Hawkey, Minor Canon and Sacrist of Westminster and said by: the Reverend Dr Donald MacEwan, Chaplain to the University of St Andrews; the Right Reverend Lorna Hood, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland; the Reverend Professor Iain Torrance, Dean of the Chapel Royal in Scotland; the Right Reverend Robert Gillies, Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney; the Venerable Sheila Watson, Archdeacon of Canterbury; and the Reverend David Stanton, Canon Treasurer of Westminster.
During the service the Mace of the College of St Salvator of the University of St Andrews, accompanied by candle bearers representing the University community, was borne through the Abbey and received at the High Altar.
The service was sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey conducted by James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers. The organ was played by Daniel Cook, Sub-Organist. The Abbey’s Organ Scholar, Peter Holder, played before the service.
The pipes and drums of the London Scottish (London Regiment) and the fanfare trumpeters of the Honourable Artillery Company also played.
The Order of Service (PDF, 650 KB)