The British Orthodox Church

within the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate

Ordination at London Mission

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. 

Evangelical-Orthodox Dialogue

On Thursday, 19th April, Father Peter Farrington participated in the Evangelical-Orthodox Dialogue, sponsored by the Fellowship of St Alban and St Sergius. The meeting took place at the Fellowship house in Oxford, adjacent to the Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity and the Annunciation.

Each meeting of the Dialogue consists of a presentation on a theme of interest by alternately an Evangelical and Orthodox speaker or participant, followed by questions and discussion, a shared buffet lunch, and closing with prayer. The meeting which took place last week was concerned with the subject of mission, and an evangelical speaker, Canon Mark Oxbrow, spoke about the Evangelical understanding and practice of mission. His interesting lecture was followed by a period of honest questions and answers which did not shy away from the difficult relationship between some Evangelical mission organisations and Orthodox communities.

Father Peter greatly appreciated the opportunity to meet with Eastern Orthodox clergy and laity, as well as Evangelicals who have a commitment to dialogue with Orthodox Christians. Almost the first person that he spoke with turned out to have a background in the Plymouth Brethren, as does Father Peter. Other participants included the former principal of the bible college that Father Peter attended when he was himself an Evangelical.

The meeting was entirely positive and worthwhile, and Father Peter is looking forward to the next meeting of the Dialogue in October when an Orthodox participant will speak about mission from the Orthodox perspective.

London Mission: Talks on Prayer

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. 

London Mission Video – Father Peter Farrington

London Mission to be launched by British Orthodox Church

On 20 February, at the historic Church of St. George’s-in-the-East, Abba Seraphim announced the launch of a new London Mission by the British Orthodox Church. Although services have been held in the Charlton and Blackheath area of south-east London since December 1972, it was always hoped to organise something in a more central location. Having investigated various possible venues and prayed that something appropriate would become available, the Parish priest of St. George’s (Canon Michael Ainsworth) and the church’s PCC had generously offered their facilities for Orthodox use.

Believing this to be a providential arrangement and being anxious to respond to the increasing number of requests by enquirers and seekers, Abba Seraphim, assisted by Fathers Seraphim Mina and Peter Farrington, have committed themselves to provide monthly liturgies as well as monthly meetings for study and instruction in Orthodox faith and spirituality. The first Monthly Meeting will be held on Thursday, 15 March with Evening Prayer at 7.30 p.m. followed by an address by Father Peter “Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke XI: 1-4) with a discussion and concluding with refreshments at 9.00 pm. The first celebration of the Divine Liturgy (St. James) will be on Saturday, 31 March (Raising of Incense 9.30 am, Liturgy 10.00 am; refreshments 11.45 am).

In his address Father Peter spoke of the nineteenth century mission of Father Bryan King, the Rector of St. George’s at that time, whose ministry to the poor and wretched in the notorious Ratcliffe Highway and Docklands environs provoked the 1859-60 Ritualism Riots. There are parallels with our own time and he hoped that our Orthodox ministry would build on the Catholic vision of sacrifice and service. It was our strong desire not merely to bring Orthodox worship and spirituality to the area  for the edification of Orthodox Christians but to engage with and reach out to the local people and their needs. He desired that Orthodox would share in the ministry already being undertaken by other local Christian communities.

Abba Seraphim hoped that this mission would be an eirenic one of pan-Orthodox cooperation, demonstrating the universality of Orthodoxy as well as the richness of its local traditions. He welcomed the neighbouring outreach and ministry in the City of London, also beginning next month, under the oversight of His Grace Bishop Angaelos and the Coptic Youth and believed that this was no mere coincidence but an evangelistic impulse of the Holy Spirit. The two ministries would not only be united by a common faith but also in prayerful support of each other.


Upcoming events

1 February 2015
Raising of Incense & Divine Liturgy: Doncaster

Raising of Incense – 9:45am
Divine Liturgy – 10:30am

Morning Prayer: Babingley

10.30am Morning Prayer

7 February 2015
Raising of Incense & Divine Liturgy: Shadwell

9.30 am Raising of Incense
10.00 am Liturgy of St. James
11.45 am Refreshments

8 February 2015
Raising of Incense & Divine Liturgy: Doncaster

Raising of Incense – 9:45am
Divine Liturgy – 10:30am

Morning Prayer: Babingley

10.30am Morning Prayer



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