Welcome to our website which we hope will be of interest or a source of information to you. Ours is a parish of the Antiochian Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch, which is in communion with all the canonical Orthodox Churches and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. In line with Orthodox practice, our services are in the language of the people; in our case, English, Orthodox visitors of other backgrounds saying the Lord's Prayer in their native tongue.
The Orthodox Church lies in a tradition that goes back in an unbroken line to the Church of the Apostles and the earthly life of Christ Himself. We are often portayed as a very conservative church but this is a matter of faith and history; one cannot change the truth to fit into a very fleeting, passing, timescale when viewed with the eternity of God and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
In our church you will see many icons of Christ, the Mother of God and many saints and sacred events; a feature of Orthodoxy that proclaims the Incarnation of our Lord and God Jesus Christ and are often referred to as "windows into heaven". The priestly vestments are very beautiful; not for the glorification of the clergy but for the glory of sinful humanity transformed by the Grace of God. The Divine Liturgy is the principal service, when the faithful may receive the Body and Blood of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Incense is used in all our services and permeates the fabric of the church itself. Thus we have a church that is internally very beautiful visually, has the aroma of sanctity and our ears are filled with beautiful music (Just human voices: instruments are not allowed). In some way the church building reflects the glory of Heaven and a place fitting for God.
Fr George's Letter for October
THE PROTECTION OF OUR MOST HOLY LADY
THE MOTHER OF GOD AND EVER-VIRGIN MARY
This feast day is celebrated on 1st October, sometimes referred to as “The Protecting Veil”. The icon of this feast combines two subjects that fall on 1st October. One is of the Mother of God appearing in the air in The Church of the Blachernae at Constantinople to the Holy Fool Andrew. The other one is of Romanus the Melodist who was unable to sing well until the Mother of God appeared to him in a dream and gave him a scroll to eat, giving him the gift of song.
The icon has the Mother of God in a cloud holding in her outstretched hands her mantle or veil thereby protecting the congregation. Below stands Romanus the Melodist who holds a scroll that reads “Today the Virgin stands in the church”. On one side the Holy Fool Andrew points towards the Mother of God, showing her to his young disciple Epiphany. On the other side stand the Emperor and Empress. There are variants of this icon often with more figures.
Mary the Mother of God is the holiest of humankind and we look to her for protection and intercession in the uncertain world in which we live. Let us ask Our Most Holy Lady to hold her veil over our little congregation and protect all of us.
“It is meet and right to bless thee, O Mother of God, ever blessed and most pure and the mother of our God. More honourable than the Cherubim and more glorious beyond compare than the Seraphim, who without stain bore God the Word, truly the Mother of God we magnify thee.”
Please pray -
FOR THE SICK:
especially Patriarch John, Margaret, Joan, Pauline Moorhouse, Doris and George Brailsford, Charlotte, Emma, Megan, Olga, Dani, Shirley Carolyn, and James Dellow.
FOR THOSE IN NEED:
especially Michael Moore; Ondar; George; Christina, Christos and family.
FOR THOSE IN CAPTIVITY:
especially Archbishops Paul (Antiochan) and John (Syriac) of Allepo, kidnapped in Syria and for all held captive in that troubled country;
FOR THOSE WHO LIE ASLEEP IN THE LORD:
All Orthodox Christians departed this life, in particular Maria Laskaris (2nd), Ioana Pop (4th), Joan Wilkinson (11th) and Lois Talbot (23rd) and all whose anniversaries occur this month; also for those who have died recently and for all who are coming to the end of their earthly lives.
Abduction of the Archbishops
Please join us in praying for their Eminences Archbishop Paul (Yazigi), Antiochian Orthodox Bishop of Aleppo and Alexandretta and Archbishop John (Ibrahim), Syriac Orthodox Bishop of Aleppo, along with countless other Syrian and Iraqi peoples, abducted by persons unknown and whose whereabouts are unknown.
Archbishop John (Ibrahim)
Syriac Orthodox Bishop of Aleppo
Archbishop Paul (Yazigi)
Antiochian Orthodox Bishop
of Aleppo and Alexandretta