St Peter’s Easter Day Vigil at Dawn

One of the oldest symbolic traditions of the Easter calendar is to be celebrated at St Peter’s Church this Easter Sunday with a very special service at daybreak.

A unique Vigil at Dawn will be held within the grounds of the historic church on March 31st at 6am. Worshippers are invited to attend the service where a Paschal Fire will be lit, and prayers shared at the blessing of the Paschal Candle.

The Vigil is a tribute to the earliest times where the Church would keep watch through the night and reflect on the glory of God. Christians would pray until the first light of day when Christ’s resurrection was acclaimed. The symbolism is in the passage of darkness into light and the offer of hope to the faithful.

True to tradition, the Exultet - the ancient hymn of triumph, will be sung in celebration of Christ’s resurrection. The liturgy will be bilingual and there will be a Litany of the Saints, and a renewal of Baptismal Vows.

The service and subsequent Eucharist will be led by the Archdeacon of Carmarthen, the Venerable Dr Matthew Hill, who believes the Vigil will be a deeply meaningful and moving experience.

This Easter Vigil follows the success of last year’s event which attracted significant interest,” explained the Archdeacon. “Once again, after prayers at dawn, the Paschal Candle will be lit from a firepit in front of the church tower and we as a congregation will process into the darkness of the church, lighting our own candles as we walk.

There will be readings, the Easter Gospel, the Litany of the Saints, and a sermon. The Gloria will be sung in true celebratory style with rapturous bell ringing and euphoric clapping. Following the Eucharist, we will all enjoy a celebratory Easter breakfast of fresh coffee and croissants.”

Everyone is welcome to gather outside the church in plenty of time for the Vigil at 6am. The Vigil replaces the usual 8am communion. St Peter’s will later be resplendent with music, flowers, bells, and joy at the Easter Sunday Sung Eucharist at 11am.