Parish News – Sunday of the Holy Cross and Annunciation

Dear brothers and sisters,

Today we celebrate the Synaxis of the Archangel Gabriel, following yesterday’s double celebration of the feast of the Annunciation and the Sunday of the Cross, with a joyful, well-attended, festive Liturgy with parishioners from Llanelli, Swansea and the West of England joining the Cardiff locals.

Thanks to singers, flower-arrangers and cooks, who most certainly rose to the occasion, and thank you to the children who contributed to our homily, and who will hopefully remember the key words of the day, central to the meaning of both the Life-Giving Cross and the Annunciation: obedience, humility and submission.

Unfortunately, Deacon Mark, Alla and Yuriy were unable to be with us, as Yuriy developed a dental abscess and – as most of you know – required surgery under general-anaesthetic yesterday afternoon. He is pretty much back to his normal self, today.

As those at Liturgy realised, without Deacon Mark leading the church set-up, confessions were unavoidably delayed, which was unfortunate on a festive day with many to confess and commune, but it was, after all, the Sunday of the Cross, and if we could not endure such a minor cross on such a blessed day, then there was little point in us coming to church. We should also rejoice that so many people honoured the double-feast by confessing and communing of the Most Pure Mysteries. Congratulations to all who partook of the Holy Mysteries! Let us struggle to preserve their Grace.

Many thanks to Masha, for bringing Holy Water from the well of the Annunciation in Nazareth, the place where the Mother of God received the tidings of the Archangel. The faithful were happy to be able to partake of this after the kissing of the Cross.

It was an added blessing to have Oswald visiting us from Norwich, and his labours, together with those of oltarnik Alexander were greatly appreciated. I hope that Oswald’s presence will become frequent.

Your prayers are asked for the newly departed handmaiden of God, Nina, for whom a litia was chanted after our Liturgy.

I am presently journeying north, looking forward to enjoying a few days with our diocesan chancellor and visiting our Wallasey parish, and will return on Thursday, heading straight to Nazareth House for confessions and the akathist to the Saviour’s Passion, to be chanted at 18:00. Please submit requests by 18:00 on Wednesday. Please let me know if you will be in the confession queue on Sunday before the day itself. Without a second priest, Sundays in Cardiff will require confessions not heard by 10:50 to continue after the Divine Liturgy.

This Saturday – 13th April – sees our second Wessex Liturgy, and I am very pleased to hear that some of our Cardiff locals will be joining us in the Chapel of St Laurence, in the centre of Warminster, to support our Wessex brothers and sisters in these early days of our local mission. We look forward to formally receiving Vladika Irenei’s blessing when we attend Holy Unction on Saturday 20th April. The Hours and Liturgy are at 10:30, and there will be a bring-and-share lunch after the service.

Any remaining parishioners who wish to avail themselves of the mini-bus travelling from Cardiff to the cathedral for this for the mystery of Holy Unction (Soborovanie), at 14:00 on the afternoon of the 20th, should let me know asap, as we wish to confirm numbers and transport arrangements.

As you will have already seen from your email inbox, the services for Holy Week remain rather less than we would ideally like due to the use of St John’s during the week, with various clubs and societies hiring the meeting space next to the kitchen on a long term basis.

The earlier part of the week will see services celebrated in Llanelli before they commence in Cardiff on Holy Thursday.

I repeat the schedule here:

27th April – Lazarus Saturday: TBC

 28th April – Palm Sunday morning: Divine Liturgy, 11:00, St John’s, in St John’s, Canton

 28th April – Palm Sunday evening: Bridegroom Matins, 19:00 in Llanelli

 29th April – Holy Monday: Bridegroom Matins, 19:00 in Llanelli

 30th April – Holy Tuesday: Bridegroom Matins, 19:00 in Llanelli

1st May – Holy Wednesday: Small Compline, 19:00 in Llanelli

2nd May – Holy Thursday morning: Divine Liturgy, 10:00 in Llanelli

2nd May – Holy Thursday evening: Service of the Twelve Gospels, 19:00 in St Mary’s Butetown

3rd May – Holy Friday afternoon: Vespers and the bringing out of the winding-sheet, 16:00 in St John’s, Canton

3rd May – Holy Friday evening: Matins of Holy Saturday – Burial service of the Lord, 19:00 in St John’s, Canton

4th May – Holy Saturday: Midnight Office, 23:30, St John’s, Canton  immediately followed by…

5th May – Sunday of Pascha: midnight 00:00 Paschal matins and Divine Liturgy, followed by blessing of Paschal foods and Paschal Breakfast

5th May – Sunday of Pascha: Paschal Vespers, 12:30, St John’s, Canton


As we enter the second half of the Great Fast, may I remind you of the importance of alms giving and highlight that the foodbank in St John’s is an ideal way for us to support those is need.

In Christ – Hieromonk Mark

Posted in Newsletter, Parish News.