Deanery Conference & Festival: what is it?

The annual Deanery Conference & Festival is a unique church gathering with origins going back to 1975. It is organised by the Thyateira Deanery of parishes of Russian tradition, but members of other parishes in the Archdiocese are especially welcome to take part. We welcome families to attend and we run a
Children' & Young Adults’ programme.

Why do we call the event both a conference and a festival? There is the opportunity to listen to talks, discuss what we have heard and participate in workshops. And the whole event is a celebration of the Orthodox Christian culture that unites our church family. It celebrates the special joy of praying and spending time with Orthodox Christians of all ages from across the country. Through learning together and sharing a common life, even if only for a long
weekend, we grow in awareness that we are one Body of Christ, with a shared faith and identity as Orthodox Christians.

The Conference & Festival takes place over the late spring Bank Holiday weekend, from Friday evening to Monday lunchtime. For some years, it has been held in the beautiful setting of High Leigh Conference Centre, Hoddesdon, Herts.

Each year's event has a particular theme and our regular programme includes:

  • 5/6 talks on aspects of the theme, with questions and discussion
  • Daily services including a Sunday Liturgy
  • A bookstall
  • Sunday evening party with an informal concert
  • Free time for conversation, walks, videos, extra presentations/activities etc.