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Christmas at the Cathedral set to celebrate with the Twelve Days of Christmas

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Giovanni Portelli Photography © 2022

The Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney is set to transform the St Mary’s Cathedral forecourt into the spectacular centre of Christmas celebrations in Sydney.

Starting Thursday, 14 December and running right up until Christmas Day, this year’s Christmas at the Cathedral theme will focus on The Twelve Days of Christmas marking twelvetide, the festive Christian season celebrating the Birth of Jesus.

Once again, the Cathedral forecourt will come alive with Christmas market stalls, live musical acts and activities in the special, free family event open to everyone.

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The Cathedral will also be open each night to the public until the extended time of 10pm, with traditional Christmas displays, including a holy nativity scene, towering real Christmas tree and displays explaining the true Christian teachings and origins of the twelve days of Christmas.

Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, Most Rev. Anthony Fisher OP hopes the celebrations will offer reprieve for Sydneysiders battling cost of living pressures.

“I think for every human being, you need periodically a shot in the arm and some encouragement, especially if there are some bleak things happening in your world.

“Here is a way you can celebrate Christmas with your children, give them a wonderful night out and it’s not going to cost you.”

St Mary’s Cathedral is not only Australia’s mother church, but also one of the top tourist attractions in Sydney, with Christmas at the Cathedral now established as one of the country’s top annual Christmas displays.

“I would say to everybody, you are welcome, this is a time of peace, and we want everyone together at this time.”

“I want the Church to be out there and public, and really celebrating the great feasts of the Church, and we do that in real style here at St Mary’s Cathedral at Christmas,” Archbishop Fisher said.

Light shows and designs for this year’s event will be delivered by award-winning Australian company The Electric Canvas, the same team responsible for delivering world-class displays at events such as VIVID Sydney and the Melbourne International Arts Festival.

The Electric Canvas Managing Director Peter Milne said they are thrilled to collaborate to deliver the Archbishop’s vision for Sydney, with their creative team working more than 265 days creating the innovative visual content for the displays.

“The Cathedral’s stunning architecture, both inside and out, provides great inspiration for us to create a projection show that not only engages the public on a purely sensorial level, but also allows the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney to share their spiritual message.”

Also assisting the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney is the major events company behind celebrations such as New Year’s Eve on the Cahill Expressway, The Epic Team.

Managing Director Ian Steigrad said he was excited to build on the success of last year with even more to offer in 2023.

“This year’s Christmas at the Cathedral will have more entertainment, gift stalls, more food choices and a whole lot of Christmas cheer,” Mr Steigrad said.

“Every evening, festivities will commence at 5.30pm with dinner options, stage performances, face painting, and gift stalls underneath more than 600 fairy lights before the illumination of the Cathedral at 8.30pm.”

The Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney also expressly thanks our sponsors, presenting partner, PAYCE Foundation as well as the NSW Government.

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