Cathedral Carol Services: Who Attends and Why?
This chapter profiles the congregations attending the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at Worcester Cathedral and at Lichfield Cathedral. Drawing on data provided by 1,151 participants, the following issues are explored: attitudes and opinions regarding Christmas and carol services, motivations for attending the cathedral service, and the broader context of religious belonging, believing, and practicing. The profile of those attending the cathedral carol service is compared and contrasted with other studies of Anglican churchgoers. This enables a distinctive picture to be drawn of a population for whom their Christian faith and belonging are important but who are less committed to church attendance and dogmatic statements, preferring the notions of mystery and of faith as a lived life. They are found to be liberal in their sexual ethics and pluralist toward other faiths; they strongly support the corporate and public dimensions of faith, a faith engaged in society both as political commentator and as service provider. Some conclusions regarding their place in the mission of the church are drawn.
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