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Volunteering at the Chapel of the House of St Barnabas

The Chapel of the House of St Barnabas is open to the public on Mondays (10am-1pm) with a weekly service at 12:45pm. Bishop Sarah will be joining us on 13th March. This is all made possible by our volunteers. One of our volunteers, Mark Allan writes:

I was always intrigued by the Chapel of the House of St Barnabas standing as it does closed behind a heavy door and locked gate on Manette street, between Greek Street and Charing Cross Road. Whenever I passed it an air of mystery was evoked within me. I was always curious to see behind the heavy locked door. A few years ago, when Fr Simon announced there was to be a Taizé service held at the chapel I was excited as at last I would be able to discover what was behind the locked door. As I entered the building the sense of mystery I had carried for years was replaced by pure enchantment.

When it was announced last year that the chapel was to be opened to the public on Monday mornings and volunteers were needed to welcome visitors, I jumped at the chance. I was given the opportunity to sit in this beautiful little chapel, chat with visitors about it and share one of Soho’s secrets.

Locals who, like me, have always wondered what was behind the door, and tourists mesmerized and thrilled by what they have stumbled across and discovered, always show a keen sense of interest and joy.

I love chatting with visitors about the chapel and extending an invitation to join us for prayers at 12:45 and letting them know they are welcome to just come in and say a quiet prayer or absorb the silence.

When I first started sitting in the chapel I took a book to read. However, very soon found I didn’t need the book as I am more than happy to sit patiently in the silence to wait and listen for God, and of course for anyone who happens to walk by and feels drawn into this wonderful corner of Soho.

We would love more volunteers to ensure we can continue to keep open to the public. Please let Revd Martha know if you are interested: or call the parish office.

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