A BISHOP in Dorset said "it was a privilege" to lead the nation in worship through radio - to be broadcast this weekend.

A Salisbury Cathedral Chapter member is also an important part of the same service.

The Bishop of Sherborne, the Right Reverend Karen Gorham, had been given the opportunity to prepare a service celebrating the journey of the wise men to Jesus in Bethlehem.

This will be broadcast on the national BBC Local Radio Sunday Service tomorrow.

In her service, the Bishop aims to reflect on being a "seeker and a searcher" and what that might mean in difficult times, including now during a third Covid-19 lockdown.

Before recording the service in her home, the bishop said: "Doing this remotely and making sure an advance recording is up-to-date has been challenging.

"It was a privilege to have been asked and great that something local can be heard across the whole of the country. For many people, 8am on a Sunday on local radio has been important to their own faith during this last year, including my own mother."

The national broadcast was produced and is being led by Canon Tim Daykin, formerly the producer and presenter of religious programmes at BBC Radio Solent, and now a Canon and Chapter member of Salisbury Cathedral.

"A service for the radio has to focus on a hugely diverse audience, much more so that one would get in church. It has to be short and to the point, with great music," he said.

"It needs to be ‘of the moment’ so listeners, especially those on their own, can feel 'that was just for me'. Good radio is not about broadcasting to hundreds of thousands of people but about broadcasting to one person hundreds of thousands of times."

Tim added: "We didn’t manage it all in one take, so I needed to work out how to say to a Bishop ‘Can we do that again please?’."

The hymns during the service will include 'As with gladness men of old', sung by the choir of Salisbury Cathedral, 'In the beak midwinter' from a recording of the chapel choir at Canford School, and 'We Three Kings' sung by Cantores Michaelis, the choir of St Michael’s Church in Southampton.

The service will be broadcast on BBC local radio stations including BBC Radio Solent and BBC Radio Wiltshire at 8am tomorrow, January 10.