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Peace Festival at St John the Baptist

The beautiful medieval church of St John the Baptist in Fleet Street, Coventry will be celebrating sixteen days of peace and reconciliation through events and services from October 30th until November 14th as part of their contribution to the Coventry Peace Festival 2017.

Coventry has a leading role in the world as a city of Peace and Reconciliation and the Coventry Peace Festival has taken place for many years. The festival is a chance to promote peace and understanding between the many faiths, cultures and communities that call Coventry home.

Much of the focus of the events at St John the Baptist will be on areas dedicated to peace and reconciliation in the Church; from the prayer of forgiveness from one of the church’s earliest patrons, the Black prince, to the famous War Memorial Window, which honours 98 of the Spon End parish who died in the First World War. Less well known are the extraordinary Stations of the Cross which the congregation commissioned to be made in Bavaria after the Second World War as part of Coventry’s determination to foster renewed relationships with the German nation.

Services during the Peace Festival include the Requiem Masses for all the Faithful Departed on Thursday 2nd November at 1pm and 7pm, a Service of Remembrance on Sunday 5th November at 4.30pm and Prayers for Peace on Saturday 11th November at 11am, followed by a poetry reading from a local poet. There will be a Sung Requiem for the War Dead on Sunday 12th November at 10am and a procession of the Stations of the Cross on that Sunday at 4.30pm.

A local artist will be showcasing his various impressions of the church during the festival and the chapel of St John the Baptist will be open for private meditation and prayer. Also there will be a peace garden, a floral peace trail, a carpet of flowers, a children’s path and daily readings and recitals from the local community.

Rector of St John the Baptist, Father Dexter Bracey says:

“As a long -standing place of Christian worship, St John the Baptist is a building which speaks of peace and tranquillity, and members of the congregation seek to work with Christians and others in the community to foster a culture of reconciliation. The programme of activities planned for this festival offers opportunities to experience the peace and tranquillity of the building and, in different ways, to reflect upon past conflicts, remember those who have suffered as a result of them, and to pray for peace."