From Your Cathedral To You


From Your Cathedral To You

Gloucester Cathedral will bring Comfort and Joy to all, wherever you may be this Christmas

Gloucester Cathedral’s From Your Cathedral To You Christmas campaign aims to give people across the city, county and diocese a positive memory after a difficult year. Our aim is to bring the community safely together in joyful and spiritual celebration - either in person or online – so they can enjoy the things that make Christmas, albeit a slightly different one this year.

Open to visitors

The Cathedral will be open to visitors from Wednesday 2 December and all donations received through our Entry by Donation scheme will to directly to the Cathedral’s Beacon of Hope Appeal.

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake, Dean of Gloucester said: “Jesus was born into a crisis; Roman occupation. The birth of God here among us brought hope to a dark world. Your Cathedral brings hope into Christmas 2020. Do come and visit. We offer all this From Your Cathedral To You.”

A Christmas Experience

We invite you to come and have a heart-warming Christmas experience this year, so along with a family friendly trail explaining the nativity story, the Cathedral will be decorated with special festive flower arrangements and lights and for the first time in the Cathedral’s history, during this Christmas period only, the spectacular carved stone ceiling in the Quire will be illuminated. One of the Cathedral’s crowning glories, this was built as an image of Heaven on earth. Just remember to look up!

Family bubbles are encouraged to come and take Christmas selfies to share with us through social media channels. The much loved, life-size knitted ‘Knitivity’ will be on display too.

Each visiting group will receive a beautifully illustrated Christmas Card along with information about our online services, a prayer and a tealight candle to take home. Carols will be played or sung during opening hours which will also include some evenings, attendance in the evening will be by pre-bookable ticket only, for dates and times, please visit our website.

Join us Online

An exciting daily Digital Advent Calendar video will be shared across social media channels and on the Cathedral website to highlight different areas of Cathedral life and the work of some of our partners. Each video offers a festive activity for you to take part in, which we hope will bring you a little bit of ‘Comfort and Joy’ this season. Take a look every day from Tuesday 1 December.

Alongside the usual Sunday services, all main Christmas services will be live streamed for people to watch online.

We are delighted to invite residents across the County and beyond to join us for two special online Christmas Services, on Sunday 20 December at 3.00pm: Online Christmas Celebration Service (suitable for families) and on Wednesday 23 December at 6.00pm: Online Carols, Anthems and Readings (a more traditional service).

Community Engagement

Our new Christmas Craft Activities resource will provide ten easy and accessible craft activities that bring the Christmas story to life.

We are hosting the Gloucestershire Sanctuary Fellowship Christmas Tree for the Homeless and encourage the public to make decorations for the tree this year.  We are also working with Gloucester City Mission to be the main collection point for their Homeless Hamper campaign. Between Friday 4 and Friday 11 December visitors can drop off donations such as mince pies, chocolate, pot noodles, tea, toiletries, hats, gloves and scarves to a collection point in the Cathedral Nave. The hampers will be distributed during breakfast club on Sunday 20 December.

Beacon of Hope Limited-Edition Hurricane Lanterns

As part of Gloucester Cathedral's Beacon of Hope Appeal, we are delighted to offer you the chance to purchase a limited-edition hurricane lantern, which has been illustrated by Cheltenham-based calligrapher, Emma Barnes. There are just 250 lanterns available, with a unique number on each. It will be yours to treasure forever as a monument from this remarkable period of history, serving as your very own beacon of hope to have inside your home.

To find out more about Christmas 2020 at Gloucester Cathedral, including opening times, services and events, please visit

We look forward to welcoming you back to your Cathedral this Christmas.


More Information

About the ‘Beacon of Hope’ Appeal

The ‘Beacon of Hope’ appeal aims to raise £1,000,000 to ensure the Cathedral can remain open and is able to play a key role at the heart of the city and county recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. Like so many other organisations, the Cathedral has lost much of this year’s normal income.

Funding will be used to achieve the following goals:

  • Programme collaborative cultural activities to help inspire local communities, promote wellbeing and stimulate economic growth.
  • Ensure the Cathedral can play an important role in meeting the spiritual and social needs of our communities by being at the heart of the recovery for the city, county and diocese.
  • Safeguard our heritage, continue to care for our fabric and adapt so music and worship can still reach people’s homes.
  • Maintain and develop our training, education and outreach provisions and support the most vulnerable members of our community.
  • Deliver a digital strategy which enhances all of the above.


National Churches Comfort and Joy Campaign

Comfort and Joy holds together the hope that Christmas will bring joy and celebration after a uniquely difficult year with an acknowledgement that – for those who have lost loved ones or livelihoods, or who are potentially still not able to be together with loved ones – it may be the Church’s role, both nationally and locally, to provide consolation, rather than assume everyone will be ready to join in jubilation.

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