A CELEBRATION which has become a firm fixture on Wearside’s advent calendar will be on song once again next week.
Sunderland Minster will host the Sunderland Echo Carol Service on Monday night.
The sermon will be taken by Reverend Canon Sheila Bamber, the minister provost, and the choir will welcome in worshipers with the processional song Once In Royal David’s City.
Christmas cheer will continue with a hymn sheet which also features Ding Dong Merrily on High, Come and Join the Celebration, Away in a Manger, Silent Night and O Little Town of Bethlehem.
Sunderland Echo editor John Szymanski, who will welcome everyone to the service and will take a reading, said: “I’m very much looking forward to taking part for the first time and I will join many of those who have made it such a success in past years.
“It will be great to see the city’s community come together, and I have no doubt that all who gather with us for the evening will be filled with festive cheer to see us through to Christmas Day itself.”
Other readers will include Stephen Plews, managing director of Northeast Press, which publishes the Echo, Sunderland City Council leader Paul Watson, Professor Peter Fidler, vice chancellor of Sunderland University, Gary Hutchinson, commercial director of Sunderland AFC, and Andrew Bradley, centre director of The Bridges.
The service will begin at 6.30pm and run until 8pm, with the congregation welcome to stay for a glass of mulled wine after the service.