Happy St David's Day!

Celebrations for St David's Day are taking place around the world today, with church services, parades and concerts in honour of the Welsh patron saint.

The example set by St David, can offer us today a template for meeting the challenges of economic and climatic change that have been posed in the first decade of the twenty-first century, according to the Bishop of St Davids.

In his annual St Davids Day message, Rt  Rev Wyn Evans says St David also lived during a time of uncertainty. His solution was to live frugally and show concern for his community, its neighbours and those with whom they came into contact.

“We stand on the threshold of an era where much of what we have hitherto taken for granted will be more problematic: easily available fuel, new sources of food, access to water,” he says. “We can no longer assume either the possibility of stable government or the existence of human rights across the planet.”

St David left a light footprint on the Earth, Bishop Wyn says, striving for a future purified, restored and recreated as the Kingdom of God in which community values of peace and justice would prevail.

“The challenge from 2010 onwards, for our political and religious leaders, is to catch that vision, live that vision and transform not only a newly-confident Wales, but the whole world.”

More than 6,000 people took part in the St David's Day parade today in Cardiff. Many  wore traditional Welsh costumes carrying the banners of Wales and Saint David.
David Petersen, the chair of the parade, said: "Our aim is to transform the national and international perception of St David's Day as a Welsh national day - just as the Irish have done so successfully on St Patrick's Day all over the world.

"We want to make the occasion an unashamed and proud celebration of Welshness brimming with enthusiasm, creative energy, new ideas and new perceptions, to make Wales's national day a happy and unforgettable experience for all taking part."

This afternoon in Westminster,  Commons Speaker John Bercow wore a daffodil in the Speaker's chair in the Commons, after reading a lesson at the traditional St David's Day service in the chapel in the Commons crypt.

Mr Bercow also received St David's Day daffodils from pupils from Ysgol Gymraeg Llundain. The youngsters were later taken on a tour of Speaker's House.

For more information on St David see ICN's Saint of the Day

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