From the liturgical red (and white) of Pentecost Sunday, parishioners of St. David’s will move from the sanctuary to the car park and add the colour blue to the June 5 Big Lunch celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
Banners, bunting and balloons will be visual signs of the parish celebration of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s 70-year-long reign when congregation and community gather for St. David’s ninth Big Lunch.
The first weekend in June is to be a remarkable Commonwealth-wide-festival marking the Queen’s amazing Platinum Jubilee. Sharing this with others from afar, the Big Lunch will begin at 11:30am when the Rev. Simbarashe Basvi says Grace. Barbecue, salads, desserts, and celebratory Jubilee cake will be followed by a program that includes performers from Fiji Canada Dance Company, English folk music, children’s photo booth, face-painting and kid-friendly chickens.
Joining the pink Queen Elizabeth rose in St. David’s garden – planted for Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012 – a red Hawthorn tree (Paul’s Scarlet Crataegus laevigata) will be planted nearby, with due ceremony, in a nod to the sovereign’s year-long Green Canopy initiative.
Considered appropriate for treed area at St. David’s, the Hawthorn (also named May tree) is recognized as one of the most beautiful trees in the rose family, and a symbol of love, hope, and new beginnings. Its thorns place boundaries against predators, sheltering small birds that also feed on the tree’s lush late-summer berries. Apart from its magical healing powers, the Hawthorn has symbolic Christian connection with Christ’s Crown of Thorns, and Joseph of Arimathea’s Glastonbury Thorn.
Ten years ago, when St. David’s held its first Big Lunch, it was believed to be the only registered UK-inspired Big Lunch in Canada (as per Canada Heritage list of Diamond Jubilee celebrations). Now, a decade later, the parish continues to embrace the Big Lunch vision of community and friendship. “Getting together over a meal can lead to people doing more than they imagined possible”.
From the singing of God Save the Queen to strains of familiar folk songs, it is hoped the Big Jubilee Lunch in South Delta will be another notable success. In church parlance, a “Red Letter Day” – a truly significant happening in this far-flung corner of the Commonwealth.
Fun Touch of Britain in advance of St. David's Big Lunch celebration of Queen's Platinum Jubilee. Photos by Mary Horton.