As Archdeacon Antony Holland for health reasons has given up driving to our Bournemouth Church, Abba Seraphim, accompanied by Abba James, has now celebrated a Sunday Divine Liturgy for him in the chapel which he has established in his garage in Portsmouth on 17th April, 18th May and 17th July.
Abba Seraphim has frequently visited his second cousin, Keith Francis Watson, now aged eighty, who lives in the Earlham Road Care House for mental health needs, in Wood Green, London, N22, which is 20.9 miles from the Church Secretariat at Charlton. Keith Watson received the clerical tonsure in April 1972 and was also ordained to the minor order of Doorkeeper by his uncle, the late Mar Georgius of Glastonbury in August 1972. Abba Seraphim had later ordained him as a Reader in June 1978. Abba Seraphim has taken the holy communion sacrament to give to Keith Watson and has also given him the holy anointing for his health issues on 16 June 2021, 23 November 2021, 18 April 2022, 13 June 2022 and 4 July 2022. The Managers of the Care home have been very attentive to his needs and the recent manager, Kediga, who was an Ethiopian Orthodox, was very pleased to encourage Abba Seraphim’s pastoral visits.
Following the intruder’s damage to the Babingley Church window the Hunstanton Police arranged for it to be replaced with just a secure wooden board, for which we paid £240 to ‘Rapid Secure Company’; but we wanted the window to be restored to its original condition and engaged Gavin of ‘Heritage Windows’ of Norfolk to utilise the original damaged stained glass window as well as to replace the internal badly damaged window frame, which he has now done completely, for which we initially paid him £534 on 25 April and now he has fully completed it internally & externally we have now paid him a further £1,602. These total repair costs amount to £2,376 but we have willingly undertaken these repairs to preserve the initial integrity of the Babingley Church. My good friend, Lady Valeria Coke, gave me a cheque of £250 for the Church to help towards the payment of the replacement window. Attached herewith are pictures of the damaged church windows and the current replacements.
At Noon on Thursday, 2 June, His Beatitude Abba Seraphim, Metropolitan of Glastonbury attended a Thanksgiving Service for H.M. the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee which was held at St. Alfege Church, Greenwich. He was accompanied and driven to St. Alfege by his friend and former teaching colleague, Mrs. Christine Nuaimi. The church bells rang grandly prior to the service, which was attended by clergy and laity from many Greenwich churches and they were welcomed by the Rev’d Simon Winn, Vicar of St. Alfege. The church choir sang many hymns of thanksgiving and all those present sang the English hymns “All people that on earth do dwell”, “Now thank we all our God” and “Guide me, O thou great Redeemer” supported by the church’s organ, whilst Francis Saunders, who had been a chorister at the Queen’s coronation in 1953, Pieter van der Merwe, an English writer on aspects of British maritime history, who works for the National Maritime Museum, spoke on “Her Majesty the Queen at Greenwich”. Among the many people who were present was also Abba Seraphim’s first cousin-once -removed, Owen Davis, who currently lives in Hong Kong and had travelled to Greenwich with members of his family to join in the Thanksgiving for our Sovereign Lady the Queen. Following the service light refreshments were offered to everyone present in the adjacent church hall.
On 9:00 am on Sunday, 17th April (the Western Easter) His Beatitude Abba Seraphim, again assisted by Abba James, celebrated the Morning Raising of Incense, followed by the Divine Liturgy for the Orthodox Palm Sunday in the chapel in the garage of the home of Archdeacon Antony Holland in Portsmouth. Archdeacon Antony’s current health problems have prevented him from driving and attending the British Orthodox Church of Christ the Saviour at Winton, Bournemouth, so he was now able to fully diakonise during the services celebrated in his home.