Added on 05/02/2013
Christ Church Bray in the Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough is inviting everyone to visit the Land of Narnia which will be dramatically recreated in the church for the six and a half weeks of Lent. The Narnia Festival forms part of the church’s 150th anniversary celebrations while also teaching about temptation and Lent. Inspired by CS Lewis’s The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the festival features a large ship, a dragon, Aslan the lion, a real waterfall and much more. Visitors will be able to walk through the Dawn Treader ship and visit the islands that King Caspian, Lucy, Edmund, Eustace, Reepicheep the mouse and Aslan visited. The interactive exhibition promises to be exciting and full of wonder for all ages.
The festival will be launched by the Archbishop of Dublin, the Most Revd Dr Michael Jackson, at an opening service on Ash Wednesday, February 13, at 11.00 am. Members of St Patrick’s Cathedral choristers will also be present. It will run until Easter Sunday, March 31, when the President of the Methodist Church in Ireland, the Revd Kenneth Lindsay will lead a service involving the local Methodist congregation in the church. During the festival there will be a number of other exciting events including a concert on February 23.
Rector of Bray, the Revd Baden Stanley, explains why the parish has chosen to mount such an ambitious festival. “As we approach the season of Lent we are drawn once again to the image of Jesus spending 40 days (and cold, cold nights) in the wilderness, fasting and preparing. It is at the end of this time of solitude that the Devil approaches Jesus who is hungry, weary, vulnerable to suggestion and subtle temptation,” he says. “For many of us, Lent has become a generic event focussed on giving up (or taking up) something. It is more naturally associated with withdrawal symptoms than dealing with the potential consequences of our choices. Over the years we as a parish have used various programs and initiatives to re–focus on what Lent can teach us.”
This is not the first time the parish has recreated Narnia. For two weeks in 2009 they picked up on the theme of Easter which CS Lewis portrays in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. (You can view it on You Tube: ‘Narnia comes to Bray’.) This time they are taking The Voyage of the Dawn Treader as their inspiration and with the kind permission of the C.S. Lewis Company and Douglas Gresham, focussing on the themes of Lent and temptation as highlighted in the book.
Over 4,000 people attended the festival in 2009 and already bookings from schools and groups from around the country are flooding in for this year’s event. Individuals and families can just turn up without booking but large groups must book in advance. Ticket prices have been kept to a minimum. Admission for a child costs €3 with the accompanying adult going free), a family ticket with up to five children costs €10, an adult ticket without a child costs €5 while an entry fee of €2 per child applies for school tours (accompanying adults free).
The concert takes place on February 23 at 7.00 pm and features music from the musical Jack which was written about CS Lewis by his stepson, Douglas Gresham, with Keith Getty. New Irish Arts (Choir and Orchestra) will perform the music for just the third time ever along with music from the film score. Tickets for the concert cost €15 (€10 with concession).
For more information contact Christ Church
and Facebook (Christ Church Bray or Narnia Festival 2013–Feb 13–March 31st).
For further information please contact:
Diocesan Communications Officer
Dublin & Glendalough