‘Clypping the church’ will take place at this year’s Mothering Sunday service at Bradford Cathedral, where the community choir ‘Grace Notes’ will also be singing

Bradford Cathedral will be marking Mothering Sunday on the 10th March 2024 with the Community Choir ‘Grace Notes’ singing Richard Shephard’s ‘Song of Mary’.

The Dean of Bradford, the Very Revd Andy Bowerman, will also be inviting the congregation to hug the cathedral building at the end of the service.

“Clypping is an old English word which means embracing and so, during our Mothering Sunday service – as we give thanks for our Mother Church – everyone is encouraged to form a circle outside, face the church, hold hands and so clyppe, or embrace, her.

“It is a way of showing our thanks to God for our Church and asking him to bless it and all that happens in and through her.  It perhaps also reminds us that we are joined together as a community to weave Jesus into the rich and diverse fabric of the City of Bradford and beyond.”

The Revd Pete Gunstone, Minor Canon for Worship and Nurture, says:
“Mothering Sunday has come to be known as ‘Mother’s Day’, a day on which mothers and the gift of mothering in all its forms is celebrated. However, Mothering Sunday is a day when Christians celebrate the mothering role of the Church as the Body of Christ. The imagery of baptism is one of being reborn, and that rebirth in baptism is the work of the Holy Spirit, operating through the Church.

“Moreover, Christians play an essential role in each other’s lives as we nurture each other to grow and become mature in Christ, just as a mother does for her children. So, on Mothering Sunday this year, we will be celebrating the role that the Church – the fellowship of all those who are following Jesus Christ – plays in bringing us to faith, and nurturing us in faith.”

Members of Bradford Cathedral ‘clyppe’ the building, which will be done by the congregation this Sunday

Daisy Widdicombe, Bradford Cathedral’s Music Administrator and leader of the Grace Notes says:
“For the Cathedral’s Mothering Sunday service this year, Grace Notes will be singing Richard Shephard’s ‘Song of Mary’, a lovely setting of the Magnificat as versified by Mary Holtby. The Magnificat is the song that Mary sings upon discovering that she will give birth to Christ, becoming the mother of God.

“As we celebrate the mothering role of our own ‘mother church’, our piece will celebrate Mary’s joy in discovering that she will be mother to Jesus Christ.”

Grace Notes is the Cathedral’s community choir for children in primary school, meeting each Wednesday afternoon at 4:30pm for energetic, fun and inspiring rehearsals.

“We learn about singing technique and prepare for services and events, at which we sing in the beautiful surroundings of the Cathedral.”

If you are interested in joining the choir, please e-mail Daisy Widdicombe on daisy.widdicombe@bradfordcathedral.org.

All are welcome to the Mothering Sunday Choral Eucharist on Sunday 10th March at 10:30am. The service will also be streamed live on the Bradford Cathedral YouTube channel and Facebook page. You are also welcome to the Fairtrade Breakfast, which takes place that morning at 8:45am.


Skip to content