This year, on the centenary of women's suffrage, we are celebrating the women who play important roles in the daily life of the Cathedral community.
Each Saturday of the year, we will be sharing a different story here and across our social media. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, and search for the #BlessedIsShe hashtag.
This week, we spoke with Helen Wardle, a member of the congregation and a volunteer in many of our different groups.
What’s your connection with Bristol Cathedral?
I am a member of the congregation, have been a Sunday School helper and part of the sewing group. I make costumes for the Education Department and Sunday School as well as being a Steward and member of the Healing team.
How long have you been associated with the Cathedral?
What first drew you to Bristol Cathedral?
I grew up attending Chester Cathedral with my family. My brother was chorister there. The music at the Cathedral, as well as the Cathedral being a familiar environment for us was the main draw.
What have been some of your personal highlights?
The nativity/Christmas services. The re-enactment of the Coronation, for which my daughter played the role of the Queen. The support I had for the congregation and clergy when I had cancer. The prayers, which continue each year, for my mother-in-law when she died.
What would you like to see the Cathedral doing over the next few years?
I’d like the Cathedral to continue to be the ‘people’s Cathedral’, but without dumbing down. The message of Christ’s salvation and standards are the constancy that should be the backbone of all the Cathedral’s work. I was stewarding at the legendary Carols for Toddlers; it was moving that so many people were shocked that we wanted them.
What does the Cathedral mean for you?
Everything. We have no extended family and without the gentle support of the Cathedral community my children would not be growing up knowing people of different generations and backgrounds. The reliability of the peace and routine of the services means that no matter what happens in our working weeks, we can ‘plug in’ to the truth and see the bigger picture and get a better perspective on life.