To Windsor Castle and back again

Last week about 30 clergy gathered in St George’s House in the grounds of Windsor Castle for a Consultation. I was amongst them, for if you’ve been on one Consultation (and I have) you want to go again and again… Of course the Consultation itself is always worthwhile, but then there is also the actual ‘staying in a castle’ and eating fabulous food and worshipping in St George’s Chapel that makes it all the more special.

The theme of this Consultation was Theology and Funerals – and you know how I love a good funeral. It was led by the Rev’d Canon Dr James Woodward and the Rev’d Dr Canon Hueston Finlay who is the Warden. Each day there were other speakers but I can’t tell you who they were or I’d have to kill you, but let’s put it this way – one of them was to be heard on Radio 4 this morning so by that you can assume they were of a pretty high calibre. We also did some study in groups and that is how we network and hear others’ stories which is one of the best bits. Oh, and there was some poetry too. Eek.

On the first night we had a tour of St George’s Chapel by one of the Military Knights of Windsor who was just a wee poppet. And of course I fell in love with the cutest little unicorn on the tomb in the chapel where we had the morning Eucharist. Sadly I wasn’t allowed to take a photo but I’m hoping that some dear person might do that for me sometime soon… Our Consultation was weaved around the daily offices and there is something rather splendid about saying those with others when you are used to doing it on your own. (Although the speed of the eucharist some mornings was a little alarming!)  And Choral Evensnog with choir was always soothing and soaring. Oh to live near a cathedral and have that every day…

We also had a trip one day into Windsor Great Park to see the Royal Chapel which is where HM usually worships. It is a delightful little parish church and the Vicar was a hoot, desperately looking for jokes to amuse HM. (She likes a joke and Mattins, by the way.) That job will be available next year but I don’t think I’ll be applying…

Of course it all passed too quickly in a haze of pre-dinner G&Ts, smokes in hidden places, scorching weather and blustery days, jokes and stifled giggles (well you really shouldn’t mix up ‘immortality’ and ‘immorality’ at a Memorial Evensnog!), cooked breakfasts, delicious food, scampering up to a Canon’s residence for vino, and conversations about death and resurrection.

I’m already looking forward to the next one…




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