Case study: Christmas Eve carols in Keswick
A highlight is 'The Twelve Days of Christmas', with half the crowd singing the odd verses, and the other half the even verses, competing to see which half can sing loudest!’
The annual Christmas Eve carol sing in the centre of Keswick has been going for so many years we're not sure exactly when it started.
It’s such a simple and fun way of putting faith into action. We asked Roy Ellis, Christian Aid Group Organiser for Keswick, to tell us a little about how it works:
“We advertise it in the local paper then we meet outside one of the hotels in the centre of Keswick - they let us plug into their electricity - at 10.00pm on Christmas Eve.
We give out carol sheets. A leader (usually one of the local clergy) announces the carols, and we are accompanied by someone on the keyboard and sometimes some other instruments.
We usually get a crowd of around 200 people, mostly visitors to Keswick, with people coming out of the nearby pubs and hotels to join in. We go ahead whatever the weather and some years we get very wet.
Halfway through the one-hour session I give a short appeal on behalf of Christian Aid, and then we go around the crowd with the buckets.
We collect up to £500, depending on the weather. After the carol singing, some people go off to the various Midnight Communion services.
A highlight is the singing of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas', with half the crowd singing the odd verses and the other half singing the even verses and a competition to see which half can sing louder.”
If you're around Keswick this Christmas Eve, you're welcome to join Roy and the churches in Keswick for a sing!