SATURDAY 10 / 23 JULY 2022: On the feast of St Anthony, the founder of the Kiev Caves Monastery, the clergy of the Cardiff parish of the Kazan icon of the Most Holy Theotokos travelled to West Wales for a pastoral visit to Ukrainian refugees accommodated in the Urdd residential youth centre at Llangrannog, on the Cardigan Coast.
Just over two hundred displaced Ukrainians are currently living at the centre, though the Orthodox are a small minority amongst mainly Greek Catholics.
Already well accustomed to travelling to serve the faithful outside Cardiff, the clergy of the Orthodox Cardiff parish arrived with all the necessary items to celebrate the Divine Liturgy, transforming a room overlooking the refectory into a temporary chapel for the morning, confessing the faithful and celebrating the Liturgy surrounded by green hills and overlooking the sea.
This first visit saw a quiet Liturgy with only a dozen people, but it was a great joy for the Cardiff clergy to celebrate the feast of St Anthony Pechersky in such a beautiful and scenic setting.
The clergy were blessed to have the assistance of Reader Bogdan, a graduate of the Moscow Theological Academy and native of Kiev, who was pleased to meet and chat with fellow-Ukrainians and was pleased to support the clergy in their pastoral outreach.
Having welcomed displaced members of parish families into the community, the Cardiff Parish looks forward to building spiritual links with the faithful who are living far from Orthodox parishes, in the Welsh valleys and in West Wales.
The parish is grateful for the support and welcome of the Urdd Gobaith Cymru staff, and we hope to return to Llangrannog over the coming months.