For those of us who gratefully pile into the pub after a long, stressful day at work, that first sip of a frothy pint can almost feel like a religious experience.

And the church itself is certainly no stranger to the pleasures of alcohol: mass remains one of the few socially-acceptable occasions to drink red wine before 11am.

The sixth-century Saint Arnulf of Metz is even reported to have said: “From man’s sweat and God’s love, beer came into the world.”

Next week, the holy communion of booze and the Bible will be consecrated at one of the more unusual Thursday night drinking sessions to take place in a Croydon pub: the blessing of the beer at The Dog and Bull.

The ceremony, whose origins are thought to date back to medieval monasteries, will involve a procession from Croydon Minster to the boozer in nearby Surrey Street, following a mass at the church celebrating the pub’s licensees, Lesley and Mark Knight.

Father Lee Taylor, the minster’s associate vicar, will then bless the The Dog and Bull’s beer barrels and pumps using instructions from a 1614 manual for the benediction of everyday items.

He said: “We believe that whatever God has created is good and it deserves blessing - including beer. It’s a good quirky thing to do.

“Today people are not very comfortable going into church, so the church needs to go to other places.”

The vicar – who said his own tipple was a pint of real ale or a gin and tonic - said that although the ritual has not been performed in this country for many years, the monks of Rochefort Abbey in Belgium still brew and bless their beer to this day.

He added: “It’s totally mad really, but it’s reviving an ancient tradition, and it’s a good way of connecting the church with the community. I had known about it, but I have just never put it into practice, and thought: why don’t we do something a bit fun and get Croydon out?”

Father Taylor’s enthusiasm to revive the ancient tradition at his parish pub is perhaps less surprising when you learn of his background.

The son of a Bolton landlady, he was “brought up in pubs”, working behind the bar of two family boozers and also playing the organ in a working men’s club.

Mrs Knight, the landlady of The Dog and Bull, said she and her husband thought the blessing of the beer was a “fantastic” idea. She added: “It hasn’t been done for a 1,000 years, or so they say, and we’re the first pub to do it. It’s something for the community, so why not? Every little helps.”

The mass will begin at 6.30pm on August 4 at Croydon Minster, before a procession to The Dog and Bull for a few holy pints.

Amen to that.