Hartlepool parishioners log on for traditional Good Friday event and service

More than 100 parishioners logged on to be part of a virtual event in Hartlepool on one of the holiest days of the year.

Friday, 2nd April 2021, 3:29 pm
Updated Friday, 2nd April 2021, 3:41 pm
Bernadette Malcolmson, left, of St Mary's Church, broadcast the Walk of Witness on social media and was joined at the war memorial by Nick Dunn and his daughter Elizabeth, who walked from St Patrick's Church at Owton Manor.
Bernadette Malcolmson, left, of St Mary's Church, broadcast the Walk of Witness on social media and was joined at the war memorial by Nick Dunn and his daughter Elizabeth, who walked from St Patrick's Church at Owton Manor.

Viewers watched a live broadcast of the town’s annual Walk of Witness on Good Friday which allows Christians to bear witness to their faith.

Due to coronavirus restrictions still in place, people were encouraged to watch from home via social media while Bernadette Malcolmson, of St Mary’s Church, on the Headland, completed the walk to Hartlepool war memorial.

She was joined along the way by father and daughter Nick and Elizabeth Dunn, who walked from St Patrick’s Church, at Owton Manor.

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The walkers are greeted at St Joseph's Church by Canon Michael Griffiths for a Good Friday service.

Bernadette said: “It was fantastic. It was a little bit chilly but within minutes the clouds broke and the sun shone on us.

“It was good to make the journey with some people whereas last year was very much a solo journey.

"Having Nick and Elizabeth on the livestream with me made it feel much more like the right thing.

"There was 110 people who watched live and we had lots of contributions. People giving memories of their own times on the walk which sparked other people’s, so it was nice to be able to bring people together in that way.”

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The walk involved the carrying of crosses and reading of prayers submitted by local parishioners at 14 stops or reflecting different moments or “stations” on the day of Jesus’s crucifixion.

Bernadette added: “We shared the readings between us. Some were reflections and were quite powerful.

"Altogether we’re really thankful for the contributions that people made.”

It was the second successive year the walk, which ends with a short service in Victory Square, has had to be held virtually due to Covid.

Organisers hope to be able to welcome large numbers in person again next year.

The event was followed by a service led by young people at St Joseph’s Church in St Paul’s Road where worshippers were greeted by Canon Michael Griffiths.

A number of services will take place at Hartlepool churches over the Easter weekend in line with government guidelines, with some also available to watch online.

For more details see the Hartlepool Churches Together or Holy Family Parish, Hartlepool Facebook pages.

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