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Rooster cries at exact moment Dean of Canterbury speaks of Biblical cock crowing

With all the performing prowess of his namesake, Russell Crow the rooster got involved in Thursday’s sermon.

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Dean of Canterbury the Very Revd Dr Robert Willis with Russell Crow the rooster (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

Dean of Canterbury the Very Revd Dr Robert Willis with Russell Crow the rooster (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

Dean of Canterbury the Very Revd Dr Robert Willis with Russell Crow the rooster (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

A cathedral rooster with perfect comic timing is the latest churchyard animal to disrupt a recording of morning prayers.

With all the performing prowess of his namesake – but considerably more feathers – Russell Crow the rooster got involved in Thursday’s sermon from the Dean of Canterbury.

But the dean refused to let the interruption ruffle him and avoided a feathery fiasco.

A clip of the interaction was shared on the cathedral’s Twitter account.

Sitting in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, the Very Revd Dr Robert Willis was reading from the Gospels when the loud bird made himself heard.

In a moment of sublime serendipity, Dr Willis read out: “And immediately while he was still speaking the cock crowed…”

At that very moment, Russell did indeed crow, interrupting the clergyman loudly and with perfect comic timing.

That Dr Willis was able to keep a straight face and continue with his recounting of the Denial of Peter was perhaps not surprising, however, as Russell is not the first churchyard animal to make a spontaneous contribution to morning prayers.

Back in May, one of the Deanery’s four cats became a viral sensation after brazenly disrupting a sermon by disappearing beneath the Dean of Canterbury’s robes.

A clip of the feline fiasco became one of Canterbury Cathedral’s most popular social media posts ever.

While Leo is “undoubtedly the comedian” of the Deanery’s four cats, he nonetheless takes his role as an ambassador “very seriously”, a cathedral spokesman said at the time.

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The Dean of Canterbury recording a sermon, which was interrupted by the cathedral cat wandering into view and disappearing beneath the Dean’s robes (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

The Dean of Canterbury recording a sermon, which was interrupted by the cathedral cat wandering into view and disappearing beneath the Dean’s robes (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

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The Dean of Canterbury recording a sermon, which was interrupted by the cathedral cat wandering into view and disappearing beneath the Dean’s robes (Canterbury Cathedral/PA)

Not to be outdone, fellow cathedral mouser Tiger leapt up onto a table next to Dr Willis and started stealing his milk earlier this month.

“We’ve acquired a friend this morning,” Dr Willis said as Tiger helped himself to the refreshments.

The team at Canterbury Cathedral have been uploading virtual prayer services as places of worship were closed during the UK-wide lockdown beginning on March 23.

It was reopened for visitors on Saturday July 4, and for services of worship on Sunday July 5.

While the comedic moments have brought joy to thousands of people during lockdown, Canterbury Cathedral has faced a a serious financial threat as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

Those wanting to donate to the cathedral can visit: https://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/donate

PA