On the evening of Friday 16th November 2018 the Cardiff Oratory and the Order of St Lazarus, Commandery of Wales, co-hosted a fundraising dinner at Newman Hall for the Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) Syrian Christian Refugee Appeal. During preprandial drinks in the Newman Hall library Dr Alex McAuley, a Classicist and Lecturer in Hellensitic History & Director of International Affairs at the School of History, Archaeology, and Religion at Cardiff University, delivered a fascinating illustrated lecture entitled ‘Syria Yesterday and Today’.
All present agreed that Alex, who is a prospective Postulant of the Order of St Lazarus, put into context the horrendous plight suffered by our Christian brothers and sisters in Syria. He also described the amazing charitable work being undertaken in Syria by ACN. The diocese of the Spiritual Protector of our Order, His Beatitude Youssef Absi SMSP, Patriarch of Antioch, covers the area of the current Syrian conflict. This added greater poignancy to the fundraising efforts of the evening.
Following the lecture, we gathered in the Newman Hall refectory for a splendid dinner prepared by the Cardiff Oratorians, assisted by the Fellows and Scholars of Newman Hall. We are grateful to the Very Rev’d Dr Sebastian Jones Cong Orat ChLJ (Commandery Executive Chaplain, Dean of Newman Hall), Fr Alexander Cong Orat (Warden of Newman Hall) and Bro Ambrose Cong Orat (Assistant Chaplain) for their hospitality. To date, £3000 has been raised by this appeal for the work of ACN. Thank you to all who contributed to a wonderfully successful evening.
Members of the Commandery were pleased that our Chaplain, Fr John Owen SChLJ, was able to join us for the dinner.
Chevalier Dr David A. Woolf KCLJ, BMLJ
Commander of Wales.