First Impressions: Saint Cecilia and Pastor Lawrence.

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This summer season has been solid with a couple of returning series such as Jujutsu Kaisen and Mushoku Tensei. However, if there is one slice of life series that is worth discussing it would be Saint Cecilia and Pastor Lawrence! It was my most anticipated series this season as I’ve fallen in love with the manga. Plus after watching 4 episodes, I can now say that it is my favourite anime this season. I love the funny and relaxing story of Saint Cecilia as well as its characters.

The story is about a young Saint called Cecilia and her daily interactions with Lawrence, the Pastor of the church. Saint Cecilia appears to be almost the perfect person to the townsfolk, but she has a lazy nature behind the scenes. Hence, Pastor Lawrence has to juggle between taking care of the church and Cecilia. Despite the simple story, I love watching the interactions between Pastor Lawrence and Saint Cecilia. Their interactions with the various townsfolk, coupled with the deep care that they have for each other makes this series very heartwarming and hilarious to watch.

In addition, the series has two other characters – Abel and Haiselita, with the latter being introduced in episode 4. Abel has known Lawrence for a long time since they studied in seminary when they were younger. We don’t know much about Haiselita other than the fact that she’s a student of Abel and she’s from a wealthy family. However, from what I’ve seen so far, their relationship will be full of comedy as they often clash with each other.

Moving onto the animation, Doga Kobo’s doing an amazing job with this. While I’ve not been hugely impressed by the animation of the scenery, I have to praise the character animation, especially Cecilia’s. Her character design is better than I expected it to be. She looks adorable and beautiful, especially when she lets her hair down. I also love her moe green eyes whenever they appear. She’s probably the most well designed character in the series. That’s what you’d expect from Doga Kobo, the master of moe anime! Apart from her, I also like Haiselita’s character design. Her short blue hair is enchanting to look at, as well as her long blonde hair extending down her back.

Character development is one of the best things about the anime. I think Cecilia shines the most in this category as she appears to be lazing around less than before compared to episode 1. In addition, her kind-hearted nature adores her to not only the townsfolk, but to her friends as well. She does have a serious side to her however, as seen by her interaction with Abel when they were talking about the previous Saint before her – Saint Federica. She takes her duty as a Saint seriously and I do hope to see this being shown more in future episodes. As for Lawrence’s character development, it pains me to say this but he’s the most frustrating character to watch. He’s as dense as a rock when it comes to recognising Cecilia’s feelings for him and he just reminds me of Amane from The Angel Next Door Spoils Me Rotten. That being said, he cares deeply for Cecilia and I just hope that he’ll finally open his eyes to Cecilia’s feelings towards him.

Abel’s a peculiar person as he’s often portrayed as a slacker who doesn’t help Lawrence when Lawrence’s taking care of the church. However, he does have a serious side to him as seen by his care and concern for Lawrence and him talking to Cecilia about Saint Federica. I do hope they’ll develop Haiselita’s character more as the series progresses as so far her character development’s been weak.

Overall, I’ve been enjoying Saint Cecilia and Pastor Lawrence the most this season as it’s such a relaxing romcom and it’s a comfy anime. I do expect it’ll only get better as the series continues as all 4 of the main characters have been introduced. The one criticism I have of this anime is how it portrays Pastor Lawrence as a dense character. It’s very frustrating to watch him and I can see some viewers dropping the anime because of him. However, the fact that the anime is doing a perfect job in highlighting Cecilia’s cute character might distract and persuade them to continue watching this series. The hilarious romantic moments between Cecilia and Lawrence are also entertaining to watch and I do expect the series to improve in this aspect of the anime.

Preliminary rating: 9/10

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