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On Thursday 7 January, the Great Feast of the Nativity of Christ, Matushka Marie Carles was presented with a gift in recognition of her faithful service to this parish and to the parish of Saint Nicholas, Wallsend.  The gift - a beautiful hand-painted icon of Matushka's heavenly protector, Saint Mary of Palestine - was presented in the presence of a great many people from both parishes at the end of the festive Divine Liturgy in Wallsend on that day.  In presenting the icon, Father James spoke of Matushka's steadfast and quiet service to the two parishes over many years in baking prosphora, singing in and leading the choir, teaching children, and faithfully supporting her husband in his own ministry.  On behalf of both parishes he congratulated her and wished her God's help in her continued service before intoning "Many Years!"

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