We sing for the relic of St. Thomas from Esztergom, Hungary

During the last week of May a relic of St. Thomas of Canterbury was brought from Esztergom in Hungary to England. The relic was carried on a pilgrimage starting in Westminster and ending at Canterbury Cathedral.

CGMS waits to sing for St Thomas's relic

CGMS waits to sing for St Thomas’s relic

We had a last-minute opportunity to sing some chant to honour this relic. On the sunny afternoon of Saturday 28th May, we gathered at the Church of St. Michael and All Angels at Harbledown to set the pilgrimage procession away on its last leg.

The relic passes St. Thomas's Hospital on its way to the Cathedral

The relic passes St. Thomas’s Hospital on its way to the Cathedral

We sang ‘Felix locus’, the antiphon which says ‘Happy the place, happy the church where the memory of Thomas is cherished.’ After this the procession advanced forward. We joined in, walking all the way to the Cathedral. We attended the Service of Welcome where the Dean and the Bishop of Dover presided. After the service the relic was carried down to the altar of Our Lady Undercroft in the crypt. We followed and we were able to sing our antiphon again. It felt poignant to sing this in the Cathedral so close to where Thomas was murdered.
Photos by Marie Muscat-King: secretstudio@talktalk.net
St. Thomas's relic on the altar of Our Lady Undercroft in Canterbury Cathedral

St. Thomas’s relic on the altar of Our Lady Undercroft in Canterbury Cathedral

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