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Dear God...
“The ocean is like God and raindrops are the religion. When they fall into the ocean they become one.”
Zoya Ahmed and Nurun Uddin

Lichfeld Cathedral

Imagine Peace: 20,000 Doves

Lichfield Cathedral was founded in AD 700, one of the earliest in the UK and a religious site of great importance. We serve the fifth largest diocese in England, a diverse community incorporating significant areas of deprivation in towns and cities such as Tamworth and Stoke-on-Trent, as well as rurally isolated communities. Our Strategic Vision 2014-2023 sets out one of our key roles as ‘nurturing Christian faith, worship and understanding through learning, exhibitions, events and interpretation of the Cathedral.’

Our Artist-in-Residence is Peter Walker. Peter is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors. He regularly collaborates with David Harper to lead Luxmuralis, a collaborative team of artists who take art, light and sound onto the streets and provide access to visual artwork in public and unexpected places, including Lichfield Cathedral.


With the support of the Westhill Endowment, Lichfield Cathedral was able to undertake the largest-scale community participation art installation we have ever done. Our aim with this project was to engage with 20,000 young people, getting them to think about themes of peace, reconciliation and forgiveness. Each child created a paper dove to the artist’s design and as part of their lessons at school. They developed personal messages relating to peace and forgiveness and also learnt about the historical and religious context for the dove as a symbol of peace.


The 20,000 doves were then installed as a stunning installation at Lichfield Cathedral in December. We engaged with a further 30,000 people who visited the Cathedral throughout Advent and Christmas and saw the completed artwork.


Photo credit: Chris Day.

‘Imagine Peace’

Throughout 2018, Lichfield Cathedral presented a seasonal programme of services and events we entitled ‘Imagine Peace’, commemorating the centenary of the 1918 Armistice. This culminated in our Advent and Christmas theme of ‘Peace on Earth’, and the centrepiece of 20,000 doves installed in the nave.

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