Ilkeston - Good Friday
Procession (29th March)
w/e 31 March
For a number of years now,
the Ilkeston Area Council of Churches (IACC) has organised a
Christian witness at Easter. This year it took the form of a
silent procession from the Salvation Army Citadel to the Market
Place where a short service was held. The procession is seen
here shortly after the start on the way up Bath Street.
The weather at this time of
year means that there is always a contingency plan to hold the
service indoors but even though Easter is early this year, a
warm sun shone down on the walkers as they passed beneath the
blossom on the trees outside the Albion Centre.
It was here that the procession
paused to sing a hymn accompanied by the Salvation Army Band.
This was one of the most moving
parts of this year's witness for me as passers-by paused to listen
to the voices echoing around the precinct in a heartfelt rendition
of "The Old Rugged Cross".
The procession continued up
Bath Street passing a shop advertising 20 minute photos. The
IACC banner proclaimed "God Is Love" and that is not
for 20 minutes but for eternity!
As the Christians assembled
on the Market Place, there was somewhat of an unusual sight on
the tower of St Mary's. In 1910 the tower was rebuilt and the
Church Warden, Mr. Harry Simpson, had his initials carved onto
the last pinnacle to be put into place to commemorate the event.
When cleaning took place in 1973, the pinnacle was found to be
unsafe and it was taken down and replaced. A few weeks ago one
of the pinnacles was again found to be in a dangerous state,
hence the scaffolding while repairs are carried out.