Easter at St Mary’s – April

14th Century Easter Sepulchre

14th Century Easter Sepulchre

In April we had a talk on the archaeology of Billingsley and a number of Easter services. These focused on the medieval Easter sepulchre in the church. This is a recess in the wall of the church close to the altar. It looks like the space for a tomb, typically where the founder of the church would be buried, but there is no body. This is point, it represents the empty tomb of Jesus. In the middle ages, shortly before Easter Sunday, the altar would be stripped and the cross wrapped in a shroud and put in the tomb, to be removed first thing on Easter morning and put back on the altar. We carried out theses ceremonies over Easter, probably the first time they had been done for 500 years.

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