Nation reflects on Baptism of Christ with broadcast from St. David’s Cathedral

St. David’s Cathedral was once more in the spotlight this morning with Mass of the Baptism of the Lord being broadcast on BBC Radio 4 ‘Sunday Worship’ programme.

The live broadcast meant it was an early start for the young choristers from St John’s College, who make up the Metropolitan Choir, and had followed a four-hour rehearsal the previous day.
Under conductor Dominic Neville, the choir gave a splendid performance and, according to one listener showed themselves to be one of the best cathedral choirs in the country, highlighted during the Mass by a most moving Communion Motet ‘Os Justi’ (Anton Bruckner).  They were accompanied on the organ by Dr. David Neville.
The Dean of the Cathedral, Canon Peter Collins, introduced the broadcast and presided at the celebration of this great Feast.  Archbishop George Stack gave the homily focusing on the imposing character of St. John the Baptist and how the Baptism he imparted was more than a ritual cleansing.  It marked a change in the way of life of the one being baptised.  With John the last of the Old Testament prophets and Jesus the link who brings to fulfilment everything the Old Testament contains the Baptism we enter into within the Church marks a new way of life, through the action of the Holy Spirit, to a new life in Christ.
The Sunday Worship programme is available for catch up on BBC iPlayer by clicking the icon below.

‘A musical tradition embedded in the cathedral’: Pope honours Dr. Neville


Tributes were paid to Dr David Neville by Archbishop George Stack and Canon Peter Collins on Dr Neville being created a Papal Knight.

Canon Peter, Dean of St David’s Metropolitan Cathedral since 2001 made the point that Dr Neville had been Director of Music there for many years before Canon Peter’s arrival.

“The name of Neville is musically embedded in the fabric of this Cathedral”, Canon Peter added, turning to Dr Neville’s wife Diana and their sons Ambrose, Dominic and James, all of whom had made musical contributions to St David’s.

Dr Neville himself had been a chorister when the Cathedral was reopened after the bomb damage of the Second World War. The tradition continues with Dominic as Master of Choristers and James as a counter tenor lead in the choir.

In the Papal Bull, Pope Francis says: “You are the most deserving of what you have done for the Holy Catholic Church and its affairs, and in order that We might give a clear sign of Our pleasure and appreciation, We choose, make and declare you, David Neville, of the Diocese of Cardiff, Knight of the Order of St Gregory.”

Many congratulations Dr. Neville.

Cathedral Hosts Service for Headteachers of Independent Schools

HMC Vespers

On Tuesday 30th September 2014, St. David’s Cathedral, Cardiff and the Archdiocese of Cardiff played host to hundreds of Headteachers of Independent Schools and Colleges of England and Wales for an Ecumenical Prayer Service.

Archbishop George Stack presided at Ecumenical Vespers in front of a full cathedral.  The homily was given by the Rt. Rev. Dr. John Inge, Bishop of Worcester.  Music was provided by Dr. David Neville and the Metropolitan Cathedral Choir of St. David led by Mr. Dominic Neville who were joined by the Chamber Choir of Uppingham School and their director Oliver Neal Parker.  Both choirs supplied a heavenly mix of chant and classical pieces lifting those present into the heights of prayer.

The opening piece was a rendition of John Dryden’s “What Passion Cannot Music Raise and Quell” set to music by 14 year old Laurence Long of King’s School, Rochester.  The piece had complex harmonies and was a delight to the ears of all present.  A testament to a talented young composer.  Archbishop George described the piece as “extraordinary” and “beautiful”.

The headteachers were visiting Wales for their annual concert, which was held at the Celtic Manor Resort in Newport.

View the photo gallery

Holy Week begins with ‘Hosannas’ in Cardiff City Centre

Palm Sunday 2014

This morning Archbishop George Stack celebrated the 11:00 Mass at St David’s Cathedral to mark the start of the most important week in the Christian calendar, Holy Week.  The cathedral was full for the celebration which began in the glorious sunshine opposite the cathedral at the Cornerstone at St David’s, the new Diocesan social outreach project that has just been awarded major funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

This first day of Holy Week is traditional called Palm Sunday.  We recall Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem on a donkey as people waved palms and shouted “Hosanna to the Son of David!”.  The celebration began with the distribution and blessing of Palms and recounting the Gospel story.  The congregation was then led across the road into the cathedral by the Cathedral Choir who sang Hosanna!  People passing through Charles Street stopped and watch the procession and listened to the choir.

This marks the start of a week of celebrations and devotions recalling the Passion and Death of Jesus, leading into the great celebration of the Resurrection at Easter.

Cathedral Choir announces music for the Chrism Mass & Sacred Triduum

Cathedral Choir

It has been confirmed by Mr. Dominic Neville, choirmaster of the Cathedral Choir of St. David’s Metropolitan Cathedral Church, what music will be used during the celebration of the Chrism Mass and the Sacred Triduum to be presided over by Archbishop George Stack.  The Cathedral Choir will be displaying their choral talents to the people of the diocese with the following selections:


Wednesday 16 April – 11.30am – Mass of the Chrism:

Missa Papae Marcelli (Palestrina), Hail Gladdening Light (Wood)

Thursday 17 April – 7.30pm – Mass of the Lord’s Supper:

Lamentations (Tallis), Ubi Caritas (Duruflé), Tenebrae Responsories (Victoria)

Friday 18 April – 3.00pm – Good Friday:

Tenebrae Responsories (Victoria), Crucifixus (Lotti), Miserere (Allegri), Stabat Mater (Palestrina),

God so loved the world (Stainer), Lamentations (Tallis)

Saturday 19 April – 8.30pm – Easter Vigil:

Sicut Cervus (Palestrina), Terra Tremuit (Byrd), Exsultate Deo (Palestrina)

Sunday 20 April – 11.00am – Easter Sunday:

K140 (Mozart), Haec Dies (Byrd), Christi Vincit Plainsong, This joyful Eastertide (Wood), As one who has slept (Tavener)


We very much look forward to hearing this selection over the course of the coming week.

Sunday Worship live from St. David’s Cathedral Cardiff


Earlier this morning, BBC Radio 4 broadcast its Sunday Worship programme live from St. David’s Cathedral in Cardiff.  This is the second time in three months that the Cathedral has been asked to host this service.  The Cathedral Dean, Canon Peter Collins, led the service to not only mark St. David’s Day but also God’s presence within creation.

The Cathedral Choir provided an array of choral music for the celebration starting with the classic ‘Let the whole creation cry’.  Other pieces included Byrd’s ‘Kyrie’, ‘All creatures of our God and King’ and Durufle’s ‘Ubi Caritas’.

Archbishop George was present and provided the homily for the service which may be read here.

The broadcast is available for the next 7 days on BBC iPlayer.  Listen to the Sunday Worship broadcast.

Archbishop leads prayer service for Christian Unity with Ecumenical Congregation

This afternoon Archbishop George Stack lead an Ecumenical Congregation in Solemn Vespers for the unity of Christians.  This annual event held at the cathedral at the start of the octave of prayer for Christian Unity has become a well attended event in Cardiff.

Archbishop and Fr. Byrne

Archbishop George Stack with Fr. Robert Byrne Cong. Orat.

This year the guest preacher was Fr. Robert Byrne Cong. Orat. from the Oratorian Congregation at Oxford.  Fr. Byrne reminded those assembled that the heart of true ecumenical dialogue and unity needs to be rooted in prayer.  He highlighted that whilst it is good to come together during the annual octave of prayer for Christian Unity, efforts need to be made to come together at other times.  Prayer is the sure foundation on which to start dialogue.

Among those present in the congregation was Pastor Gordon Naumann and members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Fairwater Cardiff.  All of the guests we very welcome to the cathedral.

Following the service, there was a brief gathering for refreshments at The Cornerstone complex.