Advent and Christmas 2021

Today at the Cathedral View More
8:00am Morning Prayer
8:30am Doors open for sightseeing
8:30am Eucharist
12:30pm Eucharist
4:00pm Last entry for sightseeing
5:00pm Choral Evensong
5:30pm Cathedral closes

Advent and Christmas 2021

Celebrate the birth of Jesus and a new relationship with God at St Paul's this Advent and Christmas. Hear again the message of the angels and, in heart and mind, go to Bethlehem and discover the peace of the Christ Child through the pages of scripture and the carols of the choir.

We need your support more than ever as we face the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has had a catastrophic impact on the Cathedral. We are experiencing a substantial loss in visitor income, which we rely upon to cover the £7 million annual cost of keeping St Paul’s open. Your support enables us to keep our doors open to serve the people of London and beyond into the future. We are very grateful for any donation you can make to the Cathedral at this time.

Discover a wealth of Advent and Christmas resources in our Adult Learning Resource Hub, including films of Rowan Williams, Paula Gooder and Stephen Cottrell exploring the mystery and wonder of the Christmas stories.

Please note that Handel's Messiah will take place in spring 2022.

Advent Carol Services
Saturday 27th November and Sunday 28th November
5.30pm – 6.45pm
FREE | Unticketed

One of the year’s most dramatic services sung by the Choir of St Paul’s Cathedral. A candlelit procession moves from darkness to light as words and music help us focus on the Advent themes of light in darkness, hope in despair and a new relationship with God in Christ.

Christmas family activities
Saturday 4th December and Saturday 11th December
10.30am - 2.30pm
Included with sightseeing admission ticket

Join us for festive family activities; listen to the Christmas story told by one of the shepherds and make your own ceramic Christmas decoration to take home as a reminder of your visit to St. Paul’s.

The MS Society Christmas Concert
Tuesday 7th December
7pm – 8pm
Ticketed via the MS Society. Book tickets online through the Barbican website.

Join the MS Society for an evening of music, carols and readings to welcome in the festive season and raise money for their Stop MS Appeal. Author Alexander McCall Smith has written a selection of poems for the evening, and guests will enjoy an exclusive performance by the Royal Ballet, who will perform an extract from The Cellist, which tells the story of the life of Jacqueline du Pré. There will be performances from world-class soloists: Dame Sarah Connolly DBE, Freddie de Tomasso and Michael Mofidian alongside the Choir of St Paul’s Cathedral.

Adult Learning event: Love is Born - Exploring Advent and Christmas
Wednesday 8th December
7pm - 7.45pm
FREE | Online 
Book tickets online

Christmas is one of the defining points of the year, for believers and non-believers alike. Archbishop Stephen Cottrell and Biblical scholar Dr Paula Gooder explore the Advent themes that turn our thoughts to eternity and the real meaning of our lives, and the Christmas stories themselves: what Jesus’ birth means, how the world changes because of it, why Christmas is much more hopeful but also darker than we may think, and why it’s all about love.

Sankta Lucia Carol Concert
Friday 10th December
7pm – 8.30pm
Ticketed online via the Swedish Church

The famous Swedish Christmas service, complete with a candlelit procession of St Lucy, and wonderful music from the Cathedral Choir and the Choir of the Swedish Church in London.

Britten’s Ceremony of Carols
Saturday 11th December
5pm – 5.45pm 
FREE | Unticketed

The ever-popular, inspiring work for children’s voices and harp, performed by the St Paul’s Cathedral Choristers and harpist Brenda Dor-Groot alongside readings for Advent and music from the St Paul’s Cathedral Vicars Choral.

A Celebration of Christmas 
Thursday 16th December    
6.30pm - 8.00pm
FREE | Ticketed | Unreserved seating
Further tickets released. Book through our webstore.

Celebrity readers join the Cathedral Choir and the City of London Sinfonia for a glittering evening of words, music, meditation and laughter with carols for all to sing.

Sponsored by Lloyds Banking Group.

Light in the Darkness
Sunday 19th December
3pm – 4pm
FREE | Unticketed

Readings for Advent and music from the Cathedral Choir frame the ceremonies of the Lighting of the Christmas Trees and the Blessing of the Crib as the birth of Christ draws near.

Messiaen’s La Nativité du Seigneur
Sunday 19th December 
5pm – 6.30pm
FREE | Unticketed

Olivier Messiaen’s powerful and deeply mystical organ meditation on the birth of Christ is played by Peter Stevens, Assistant Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral, framed by seasonal readings.

Christmas Carol Services    
Thursday 23rd December and Friday 24th December    
4pm –  5.10pm
FREE | Unticketed

The start of the Christmas season with the re-telling of the story of the birth of Christ in words and music at this traditional service of Lessons and Carols, with music from the St Paul’s Cathedral Choir, and readings given by representatives of London life and the St Paul’s Cathedral Community. British Sign Language interpreter available.

Midnight Eucharist    
Friday 24th December    
11.30pm –  12.30am
FREE | Unticketed
BSL interpreter available

As the world waits for the birth of Christ we gather together in the middle of the night to celebrate the first Eucharist of Christmas. Music from the Cathedral Choir announces the Christmas feast.

Christmas Day
Saturday 25th December
All services are free | Unticketed

Holy Communion    
8am – 8.30am

Morning Prayer    
8.45am – 9am
Sung Eucharist
11am – 12.30pm     
The principal service of the day with carols for Choir and congregation.

Festal Evensong
3 – 4pm
The traditional, famous and uplifting choral service of Evensong, sung by the St Paul’s Cathedral Choir.

Sunday 26th December – Stephen, Deacon, First Martyr
All services are free | Unticketed

Holy Communion
8am – 8.30am

Morning Prayer
8.45am – 9am

Sung Eucharist
11.15am—12. 30pm

Evening Prayer and Sermon
3pm – 3.45pm


Monday 27th December – John, Apostle and Evangelist and Tuesday 28th December – Holy Innocents
All services are free | Unticketed

Choral Evensong

From Monday 27th December – Saturday 1st January our 5 pm Choral Evensong services will be sung by visiting choirs from across the UK and abroad.

For more detailed information on attending services and events during Advent and Christmas, visit our helpful ticketing and visitor information page.