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2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I. St Luke’s community choir, Vox Holloway, will be marking the centenary with a performance on Sunday 20 July – not with a war requiem or medley of popular wartime songs, but by celebrating harmony across the ages.

The 70-strong choir will explore the concept of universal harmony through works by composers from Germany, Austria and England. Entitled “From Harmony”, the programme includes Handel’s Ode For St Cecilia’s Day, Vaughan Williams’ Serenade To Music, and Haydn’s Missa Sancti Nicolai. The choir will be joined by a 20-piece baroque orchestra and acclaimed guest tenor soloist, Simon Walton.

Justin Butcher, founder and artistic director of the choir, says, “We needed a way to commemorate World War I that also reflected the ethos of our choir, which is that music brings people together. What better way than to sing some of the most beautiful music from Germany, Austria and England that celebrates harmony and humanity? As Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said, ‘Music is the universal language of mankind’. And so, as a way of remembering conflict, we’re celebrating the unifying power of music.”

Founded in 2009, Vox Holloway (“Voice of Holloway”) is a community choir open to all, which performs an eclectic range of classical, ecclesiastical, folk, pop and world music. Its performances have raised more than £60,000 for charities all over the world, including over £10,000 for Hand In Hand for Syria in December 2013.

Tickets for this musical spectacular on 20 July cost £12 (£8 concessions) and are available from http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/from-harmony-tickets-12110487795?aff=es2&rank=1 or on the door. Doors open at 7pm, and the performance begins at 7.30pm. We hope to see you there!

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Our biggest project each year at St Luke’s is our part in the Islington Churches Cold Weather Shelter. Throughout January-March (the coldest three months of the year), we open our doors each Saturday to offer a bed and meals to homeless people (six other churches in the area cover the rest of the week).
Now the dust has settled on the 2014 project, we’re pleased to report it was another successful season. Over 13 Saturday evenings, we hosted 80 homeless guests. As well as food, friendship and a warm, comfortable place to sleep, Nightshelter also offered services such as hairdressing. Activities are another valued part of the experience and this year, guests were able to enjoy three evenings of live music and one evening of dance, participate in a photography project, and have fun at a pizza-making evening.
Over 100 volunteers from the church and local area helped to make Nightshelter 2014 run smoothly – without them, the project would be impossible. Church members also donated clothes, toiletries and food. Guests particularly appreciated the new shower cubicle and washroom, which St Luke’s was able to install thanks to fundraising efforts by the church and individual members.
The success of Nightshelter is a testament to the hard work and commitment of Dan Northam Jones. Special thanks also goes to Alex Smith, who volunteered at all but one night shift. ‘The shelter would not have been possible without Alex’s dedication,’ says Dan.
Plans are already underway for the 2015 Nightshelter, and will begin in earnest after the summer break. Please speak to Dan if you’d like to help out in any way – from supervising shifts, to doing laundry and cooking meals, to raising sponsorship money to keep the project afloat. Thank you!

Comedian Juliet Burton returns to St Luke’s

Here at St Luke’s, one of our favourite stand-up comedians is Juliette Burton. The acclaimed comedy actress and writer performed her Edinburgh show for us back in January, in aid of our Nightshelter for homeless people. And what a night it was! If you enjoyed that show – or you have yet to sample the [...]

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Church Breakfast

This Sunday,15th June, instead of a church lunch there will be a church breakfast from 9.30am – 10.45am. All are welcome, but if possible the St Luke’s foodie team would appreciate a thumbs up if you intend to partake – email saintlukeschurchlunch@gmail.com. Come and join us!

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Bethlehem Unwrapped documentary and auction at St Luke’s

Back in December, our own Justin Butcher – actor, writer and choirmaster at St Luke’s – launched a major art protest project down the road at St James, Piccadilly. On 23 December, an 8 metre high Wall installation was built across the courtyard of the historic Christopher Wren church, blocking it from view and ‘unwrapping’ [...]

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Christ is Risen – Go Solar!

The recent talk by Sara Rowe wasn’t recorded but its’s worth a read. Here’s the full text.

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