Abbey holds Remembrance Day Service

A Service of Commemoration and Thanksgiving on Remembrance Sunday was held at Westminster Abbey on Sunday 8th November 2015.

The service was attended by the Lord Mayor of Westminster, The Lady Flight, and Councillors of the City of Westminster as well as Vice Admiral Jonathan Woodcock OBE, Second Sea Lord, representing the Royal Navy; Lieutenant General Mark Poffley OBE, Deputy Chief of General Staff, representing the Army; Air Marshal Sir Baz North, Air Member of Personnel, representing the Royal Air Force; the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe; Captain Stephen Gudgeon representing the Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleet; and Captain Colin Cox representing the Merchant Air Service.

The service was conducted by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall who said in his Bidding: 'We have come to remember before God those who have died for their country in the two world wars and the many conflicts of the years that have followed. Some we knew and loved: we treasure their memory still. Others are unknown to us: to their remembrance too, we give our time this morning. With thanksgiving we recall service offered and sacrifices made. We come with proper penitence for the destruction that war brings to individuals, families, and nations. We pray for all those, both civilian and military, who have died or continue to suffer the effects of combat. We thank God for the hard-won freedom from strife that we enjoy in this land. We pray God for a time when such sacrifice may never again be required. But we humbly ask that men and women might always be found who count their lives worthy above all because they serve the greater cause of justice and concord. Trusting in God's grace, we dedicate ourselves anew this day to creating a world in which healing, peace, and virtue flourish.'

The Lord Mayor of Westminster read Isaiah 65: 17, 19-22, 24-25, and the Reverend Professor Vernon White, Canon Theologian, read Romans 8: 31-35, 37-end.

Two minutes' silence was held after a procession to the Grave of the Unknown Warrior.

Intercessions were led by the Reverend Christopher Stoltz, Minor Canon and Precentor.

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 and before the service by Martin Ford, Assistant Organist.

The Choir sang Psalm 46, the anthem Greater Love Hath No Man (John Ireland), the Kontakion of the Departed (translated by William Birkbeck), For The Fallen (by Douglas Guest from the poem by Laurence Binyon), and the anthem My Soul There Is A Country (by Hubert Parry from a poem by Henry Vaughan).

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