Ecumenical representatives attended a memorial service for the late Patriarch of Antioch, His Holiness Mar Ignatius Zakka I Iwas, held at the Syriac Orthodox Cathedral of St. Thomas in Acton, West London. His Eminence Archbishop Mar Athanasius Toma Dawod, presided, assisted by the priests and deacons of his diocese. Among the speakers were His Grace Bishop Vahan, Primate of the Armenian Orthodox Church in Great Britain & Ireland and President of the Council of Oriental Orthodox Churches. Abba Seraphim, Father Peter Farrington, Deacon Daniel Malyon and Subdeacon Trevor-James Maskery attended from the British Orthodox clergy in London. Archbishop Athanasius warmly welcomed all those who attended and spoke lovingly of the late Patriarch, like many, recalling with affection, his presence at the Cathedral in Acton when he consecrated it in July 2010.
Photos of the event can be found on the BOC Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/britishorthodox/sets/72157643526552524/
On 5 May, during the regular monthly celebration of the Divine Liturgy for the British Orthodox London Mission of SS. George & Paul the Hermit at St. George-in-the-East, Shadwell, Abba Seraphim ordained Daniel Malyon as a Subdeacon. Daniel is a member of the BOC Portsmouth Parish but whilst teaching near St. Albans, has been serving as a Reader attached to the Secretariat staff, so has been serving with Abba Seraphim at Babingley, Charlton and Shadwell. A graduate in theology, he is currently studying for his Master’s degree in Orthodox Theology at the University of Winchester.
Assisting Abba Seraphim at the Liturgy were Fathers Simon Smyth and Peter Farrington as well as Deacon Theodore de Quincey. They were joined by two of Daniel’s fellow Readers from Portsmouth, James Kelly and Anthony-Paul Holland.
On 15 March at St. George’s-in-the-East, Father Peter Farrington inaugurated the first of the new London Mission’s monthly evening meetings with a talk, “Lord, Teach us to pray.” Drawing on St. John Cassian’s Conferences he explored the counsels of Abba Moses on Prayer before going on to consider the different, but significant, contexts in which the Lord’s Prayer is introduced in the Gospels of Saints Matthew and Luke. Father Peter will return to the theme in his next talk on 12 April.
On 4 February the Armenian Parish of St. Sarkis in Kensington celebrated its Patronal Festival with an Ecumenical Service for Peace. Among the dignitaries attending were Her Excellency Mrs. Karine Kazinian, who took up her position as Armenian Ambassador to the Court of St. James last September but has quickly become a popular figure with the Armenian community here and Her Worship the Mayor of the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea (Councillor Julie Mills). Among the clergy attending were Abba Seraphim, His Grace Bishop Angaelos and His Eminence Archbishop Elisey of Sourozh (Moscow Patriarchate) as well as priests from the Catholic Church, the Church of England and the Church in Wales.
After welcoming the ecumenical guests, His Grace Bishop Vahan spoke about the life of St. Sarkis and his example of service and the pursuit of truth and peace. It has become a tradition at this annual celebration to honour the service of one of the long-serving members of the Armenian community and this year Mr. Armenag Topalian, who has served in various positions for some four decades and recently retired from his term as a Trustee of the Church (2004-2012) received a public citation of thanks.
Also attending from the British Orthodox Church were Deacon Theodore de Quincey and Reader Daniel Malyon (pictured with Bishop Vahan and Abba Seraphim).
The occasion also marks the eightieth anniversary of the church’s consecration (11 January 1923).