For the second year running, the Cathedral Choir School has revived the medieval ceremony of the Boy Bishop, to mark its patronal feast, on old St Gregory's Day.
The Administrator had judged the sermons of all top year boys, and the winner was called forth at the end of the Patronal Mass, and enthroned as Boy Bishop.
Lord, who hast set before us the example of children,
that we may learn of them
the ways of wisdom and purity of heart;
grant to this thy son
that, like the young prophet Daniel,
his eloquence may lead his elders into the ways of truth.
Give him faithfulness,
That, like the boy Samuel, he may hear your divine prompting.
We ask this though Christ, our Lord.
The candidate is vested as Boy Bishop by his attendants in a cope. A mitre is palced upon his head, and then removed.
The Headmaster of the Choir School says:
I am still young, and you are old,
And I am shy, afraid to tell you what I think…
But great age does not give wisdom,
Or longevity sound judgement.
So I ask you for a hearing;
Now it is my turn to tell you what I know. (Job 32; 6, 9)
The Boy Bishop delivers a short sermon
He concludes with this prayer:
Lord God, who raise up the lowly
And set aside the mighty,
Receive our praise, and bless us with your presence.
May the prayers of St Gregory
Who, seeing the children of this land,
Was led to establish the faith in England,
Guide our school, and our families in the ways of truth.
We ask this through Christ, our Lord.
We ask Our Lady, who raised the infant Jesus,
To look upon us, her children, as we pray
Hail Mary …
The celebrant gives the final blessing.
The Boy Bishop processes with the celebrant to the sacristy.