The 75th Anniversary mass and celebration of the re-foundation of the Benedictine Nuns of St Mildred`s Abbey, Minster
Picture from the 75th Anniversary mass and celebration of the re-foundation  of the Benedictine Nuns of St Mildred`s Abbey, Minster at which Bishop Demetrios, who flew in from Syria* especially for the event (arriving in the nick of time on Sunday morning with the help and good offices of the F&CO and the Borders Agency) to perform the Veneration of the Relic of St. Mildred held by the abbey.  (The photo shows Sisters holding the Relic and the St. Mildred`s icon).

St. Mildred`s  ( Mildred succeeded her mother, St Domneva, as Abbess of St Mary`s monastery in 695 AD) is the Mother Church of Thanet and one of the first Christian settlements in the United Kingdom. St. Mildred is the patron saint of the deanery of Thanet.

Further information: Mother Nikola, Mother Superior. Or Sister Aelred Erwin (sraelrederwin@googlemail.com).
 
The “Syrian connection” arises because an early Archbishop of Canterbury and patron of St. Mildred`s was a Syrian.

Bishop Demetrios will be staying at the Abbey until Thursday, when he is due to return to Syria.  His views of the situation in Syria are uncomfortable for those in the West  but his account of the suffering of Christians, particularly in Homs, needs airing.
 
Sir Roger said, after the service;
 
“St. Mildreds has a pivotal place in the history of the Isle of Thanet and of Christianity in the United Kingdom.  The present Benedictine Community plays an important part in the life of the village, represents continuity in a time of national and international turbulence, and should be celebrated by the residents of Thanet. I am pleased to have been able to help to facilitate the visit of Bishop Demetrios whose presence was central to the celebration”.
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