Enter the Mystery

Tiger Bay

Be still and listen to the sounds of the city.

Perhaps you can hear traffic as cars and buses make their way up and down Bute Street.

Is there the chattering of children as they make their way to and from St Mary’s School? Maybe a train is carrying tourists to Cardiff Bay, or you can hear the sounds of neighbouring building sites as Cardiff continues to grow, or the public announcements from Central Railway Station carried on the wind.

Listen to the sound of the birds in our Wild Side, or the gulls screeching high above you.

Perhaps the bells of St Mary’s are ringing now, calling people to worship, or sounding out the chimes of the Angelus, or maybe you can hear the Muslim call to prayer from one of the two mosques here in Butetown, as the sound of Arabic is carried across the rooftops.

Listen to the sound of those passing by, the chatting mothers, someone arguing on their mobile phone, tourists exploring the city stopping to take a photograph of the War Memorial.  What languages are they speaking?

As the docks expanded in the nineteenth century, workers from across the world sailed in.  Many settled here, bringing their traditions, cultures and religion creating a diverse, multicultural and multi-religious community.

Then you could have heard over 50 different languages spoken by people from Norway, Somalia, Yemen, Spain, Italy, Greece, and many different accents as people from the Caribbean lived and worked alongside the Irish.

Just around the corner you’ll find the beautiful Greek Orthodox Church of St Nicholas which attracts Greek worshippers from across Cardiff and South Wales.

Our priest meets with some Muslim friends at South Wales Islamic Centre in Alice Street

Today, there is still an established Muslim Community in Butetown and we all get on rather well!

You can still hear the sounds of Arabic and Somali and Greek, and other languages too.  We don’t regard difference as something to fear.  We are glad to be part of Multicultural Butetown!


Longer Read: if you have time to linger and want to dig deeper check out our blog post, “Under the same sun”

Gathering with Muslim friends for Remembrance Sunday at St Mary’s Church
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