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St. Mary's when it was the much-loved parish church of Caerau with Ely. Photo supplied by loyal Supporter Cliff.

St. Mary's News. Autumn 2019

Cadw has now given permission for the installation of a new cross atop St. Mary's and Martin has instructed stone masons Architectural Stone to carry out the work. This is very good news as we can now be confident of having a cross to replace the one stolen more than two years ago.

St. Mary's Friends did a brilliant job entertaining our Canadian Friends who visited St. Mary's in May this year seeking their ancestors' grave, identified from the Friends Grave Map.

Friends also entertained Chris and his wife, who visited in August to see the old church where they married many decades ago, when St. May's was the beautiful parish church serving Caerau and Ely.

The absence of damage during the long holidays, when most of the petty vandalism occurs, is encouraging and could be down to the involvement of community groups with youngsters over the summer months. In late September, however, offensive graffiti was spotted on the structure of the church and gravestones, but thankfully due to members of the community reporting this to Peter and Martin, prompt action was taken to remove it. It is sad that some people feel daubing the graves of men and women and brave servicemen is their only way of expressing their anger or whatever it is that motivates them to carry out this mindless activity.

Next year will be the 10th anniversary of the Rev (Father) Victor Jones's death and Friends would like to mark this in some way. Father Jones, in his time in Caerau and Ely as parish priest, was one of the finest leaders the community had known. Living amongst his parishioners, he brought together many disparate groups, especially young people. His church services were always well attended and he ran many activities for young people, including youth clubs and scout groups. In addition to this he inspired the monumental task of turning the vandalised St. Mary's into a working church again.

Suggestions for marking the anniversary are welcome.

Caerau Friends do a great job regularly visiting to check the site and tidy up, and to remove litter each week.

Please continue to visit the church and graveyard whenever you can. It's a lovely peaceful place for tranquil reflection. You can report damage or suspicious behaviour to police on 101 or to Councillor Bradbury. Please quote St. Mary's Postcode CF55NA when in touch with police.

Delia & Caerau Friends.