Weekly News: 4/17 Ju

Most noble and sublime was your life and death, O Sovereigns; wise Nicholas and blest Alexandra, we praise you, acclaiming your piety, meekness, faith, and humility, whereby you attained to crowns of glory in Christ our God, with your five renowned and godly children of blessed fame. O passion-bearers decked in purple, intercede for us.

Dear brothers and sisters,

Greetings on the feast of the Holy Royal Martyrs. Please ensure that you mark this feast with prayers and hymns, especially for our Russian Church Abroad, for whom the Royal Martyrs are a pillar of its spiritual identity, and for our own local community and its brothers and sisters.

Those who often know nothing of their lives and who are often indoctrinated with a perverted Soviet version of Russian history, sadly, continue to belittle and malign the Imperial family, who not only possessed deep and immovable Faith, but lived it in deeply and martyrically in  their everyday lives up to their bloody and satanic martyrdom in the hours between 16th and 17th July 1918, according to new calendar reckoning. For us, they remain an inspiration and source of spiritual strength. May they pray for us and protect us by their prayers!

Considering the time of year, we were quite astounded at the number of faithful at yesterday’s Liturgy on the feast of the Translation of the Relics of St Philip, Metropolitan of Moscow and All Rus’, and I was so happy that we were able to celebrate the feast of this great wonder-worker together.

It was a joy to welcome back those who had been away on holiday, to share our service with new visitors, as well as seeing more recent faithful who are only able to be in Cardiff occasionally.

The previous four days saw many confessions, and this was reflected in the number of those communing on this festal day. We congratulate all of them on their confession and communion, and encourage all to struggle to preserve the Grace of Christ’s gift and foretaste of the resurrection!

Many thanks to our choir for their joyful singing and also to our oltarniky, among whom Stefan marked his six months serving in church. The posies made by Matushka Alla for the principal icons were much appreciated, as were Branka’s lovely small prosphory for the congregation, and the ‘Partridge prosphory’ for our proskomedia.

Thanks to our sisters for providing refreshments with which the faithful could break what is always a pretty long fast, given the late hour of communion.

A number of us were extremely interested to see the mementos that Margarita was able to bring from the Convent of the Annunciation, which having refused ROCOR’s union with the Moscow Patriarchate and its decline within an Old Calendar Greek jurisdiction is sadly being sold. Having been founded with the blessing of St John of Shanghai and San Francisco, this sacred place was once a pillar of our Church Abroad. Some parishioners have been greatly saddened by this, given their fond memories of the convent, of Abbess Elizabeth – of blessed memory – and of the important place of the convent in their own lives. To the Abbess Elizabeth and all of the sisters, Memory Eternal!

As announced in church, I was unable to confirm the venue for Friday’s prayer talk, since our starosta was not in church yesterday, due to health issues. I will confirm whether our prayer talk is in Nazareth House or St Mary Butetown over the next day or two, but either way, we will meet this coming Friday at 19:00.

Making the most of my presence in the city on Friday, I will hear confessions in Nazareth House in the afternoon, with confessions for those attending the talk from 18:00. I would appreciate emails requesting confessions to reach me by 18:00 on Wednesday. Please indicate if you will stay for the talk, so that I can distribute confessions between the afternoon and early evening.

As next weekend will see me preparing to serve in Walsingham, I will not be in Cardiff for vespers on Saturday.

I and a number of parishioners will depart on our Norfolk Pilgrimage on Monday 24th July, making it impossible to celebrate the Liturgy for the feast of St Olga that day, but we return in time for the feast of St Vladimir on Friday, when the Divine Liturgy will be served in Nazareth House at 11:00. Sunday will see us honour the Holy Equals to the Apostles in the Convent Church, when we will greet our Olgas, serving moleben and chanting Many Years!

Looking forward to next month, may I remind parishioners that, on Saturday 5th August, we will make a pilgrimage to St Anthony’s Well in the Forest, before visiting St Mary’s Church at Kempley, with its remarkable series of Romanesque frescoes. We will meet at the well at 11:00, serving a moleben to St Anthony, and have received a kind invitation to Zoe’s home for lunch, before we go to Kempley.

A number of our usual pilgrims will be away, but anyone interested and perhaps seeking a lift should email Tracy: t_sbrain@icloud.com

As requested at Liturgy, may I ask all who wish to remain on our very out of date mailing list to send a short email making this clear, as the email address list is hopelessly out of date. Next week’s news will only be sent to addresses on the updated list.

Again, we ask your prayers for the sick and suffering servants of God, the Priest Anthony, the Reader David, Maxim, Phoevos, Andrey, Brigid (Mo) and Ludmilla; for Svetlana, Anna and Sofia, travelling in Russia; for Nataliya, who is visiting family in the USA; for Maria, who will be travelling on Wednesday; for the newly departed servants of God the Archpriest Alexander and the Nun Mina, and for Presbytera Cacilia, who’s Years Mind falls at this time: Memory Eternal!

With love in Christ – Hieromonk Mark

Posted in Parish News.