Launch of new Welsh language missional community in Cardiff
A new Welsh language missional community is being launched in Cardiff.
Calon Lân, named after a popular Welsh hymn, will hold its first Sunday gathering on 20 October at 5pm in the city's Rhiwbina Baptist Church. After several months of praying together the group believes it is now time to go public.
Cardiff's population currently stands at 350,000 and rising. More than ten per cent of its residents speak the Welsh language and the group hopes to reach out to the tens of thousands of speakers who have little or no connection with any church.
Church attendance statistics suggest that Wales has lower numbers of people in church on Sunday than any other part of the UK and Calon Lân knows it is facing a challenge.
The Welsh language has experienced a renaissance in the last twenty years and is one of the fastest growing minority languages in Europe.
With hundreds of Welsh medium schools scattered across the nation, its own dedicated TV channel - S4C - and the prominence given to the language by the Welsh Government, the future of Welsh continues to be healthy.
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Gethin Russell-Jones, one of the leaders of Calon Lân said: "We are here for the unchurched, de-churched and people who are hungering for some spiritual reality in their lives. It will be fresh, contemporary and open to anyone.
"Whilst many Welsh speakers have distant connections with church or chapel, Christianity is often viewed as a museum piece belonging to another century. Calon Lân exists for all ages and all language abilities; in fact our songs, prayers and talks will be bilingual so we'll be fully inclusive.
"Calon Lân's mission is to create a community where people are loved and valued and where God's dynamic kingship is experienced."
Calon Lân launches on Sunday 20 October, 5pm, at Rhiwbina Baptist Church, Lon Ucha, Cardiff CF14 6HL.