Ash Wednesday – Wednesday 17 February is Ash Wednesday, another significant date in the Church’s year, and another occasion on which we will miss being together for our usual pattern of worship. However, we will be marking the day with a series of outdoor and online services. At both outdoor services, the imposition of ashes will be offered in a Covid-secure, non-contact way. There is no online booking for these services. Please join us if you wish, being careful to observe social distancing. A verger will ask for your contact details or ask you to check in using the NHS Covid-19 app, for Test and Trace purposes.

  • 10.30am: Ash Wednesday Prayers and Ashing outside Sacrista Prebend. Dean Nicola and Canon Richard will be available for prayer and ashing until 11.30.
  • 1.15pm: Holy Communion with the Imposition of Ashes outside the west door of the Minster.
  • 7.00pm: Online Sung Eucharist with music sung by our Lay Clerks. During the service there will be an invitation to observe the imposition of ashes in our own homes. Please see below for instructions on how to make ash from palm crosses.

Making Ash from Palm Crosses

  1. In a safe environment (probably outdoors), burn the palms in a large an open metal pan. (Have a fire blanket or container of water to hand just in case.)
  1. Once burned, reduce the debris in the pan with a fork.
  1. Sift the ash through a fine sieve with a spoon to get a fine light-grey ash. Discard larger debris left in the sieve.
  1. Into the fine, light-grey ash, add just a few drops of olive oil at a time, mixing it into the ash with the fork. Aim to use only enough oil to darken the ash and make it coalesce a little, leaving it as dry as possible. Do not use water, as the mixing of ash and water will form a caustic substance that can irritate or even burn the skin.
  1. Place the ash in a small container, such as a cup, ready to be used in the service.