Enriching Christian worship through music and the arts


An Afternoon with John Bell

Saturday 26 October 2019 - Bury St Edmunds

Sunday 27 October 2019 - Colchester

We are pleased to welcome international speaker, musician and composer John Bell to Suffolk and Essex. At St Edmundsbury Cathedral, and at Lion Walk Church in Colchester, he will lead a singing workshop and a service.

Everybody Sing! Life and its Seasons in Song

An afternoon of singing, exploring the life of Jesus and our own seasons of life.  Experience John's unique gift of enabling anyone to make music, even those with no previous experience of singing with others.

Two aspects of the musical life of the church to which scant attention has been paid are songs which deal with the life (as distinct from the birth and death) of Jesus, and songs which celebrate the seasons of life which we all go through. The workshop will introduce participants to material from the Iona Community and the global church which help correct the imbalance and are instantly singable.

Saturday 26 October, St Edmundsbury Cathedral

2.00pm     Workshop

4.30pm     Service

Sunday 27 October, Lion Walk Church, Colchester

3.30pm     Workshop

6.30pm     Service

John Bell

John L Bell is a preacher, hymnwriter, composer, lecturer and broadcaster. He is an ordained minister of the Church of Scotland and a member of the Iona Community. During his studies in Theology, he became the first (and last) student Rector of the University of Glasgow. After a period in the Netherlands and two posts in church youth work, he became employed in the areas of music and worship, founding during that time, with Graham Maule, the Wild Goose Worship Group and the Wild Goose Resource Group.

He is a past convenor of the Church of Scotland’s Panel on Worship and the committee that produced the ground-breaking Church Hymnary 4. In 1999, he was honoured by the Presbyterian Church of Canada and the Royal School of Church Music which bestowed on him a Fellowship. He was awarded in 2002 an honorary doctorate by the University of Glasgow, and in 2013 the Community of Christ International Peace Award. John has produced many collections of liturgy, scripts, sermons and reflections, original hymns and songs (some in collaboration with Graham) and three collections of songs of the World Church, and is primarily concerned with the renewal of congregational worship at grass roots level.

What does it cost?

There is a requested donation of £12 per person for the workshop. There is no cost to attend the service.

How to book


If you have a problem with the online booking form, please contact us HERE.



Saturday 26 October, St Edmundsbury Cathedral


Angel Hill, Bury St Edmunds IP33 1LS


Angel Hill, or Ram Meadow car park

Sunday 27 October, Lion Walk Church, Colchester


Lion Walk Precinct, Colchester CO1 1LX


NCP St Johns Street


Download posters, fliers and PowerPoint slides to promte this event.