Teenage refugee from Ukraine awarded for church contributions in Devon awards
A teenage refugee from Ukraine has been honoured for his work in churches in Exeter Cathedral’s annual award.
16-year-old Danil Taktamyshev, who attends St Matthias in Torquay, was recognised for his work with fellow young Ukrainians after moving to the UK following the Russian invasion.
However, he was unable to receive the award in person as he has since returned to Ukraine.
This year’s St Boniface Awards, which celebrate the unsung heroes of Devon’s Anglican churches, took place during a service at Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 24 June.
Sixteen individuals from churches across Devon were admitted into the Company of St Boniface.
Thirteen of the recipients attended the service and were presented with a medal by the Bishop of Exeter.
They included a mother-of-three who trains church volunteers to run antenatal classes, a former engineer who created a bell-ringing simulator to train new bellringers, and a woman who helped save her church from closure, growing the congregation from nine to 40 people.
Named after Devon’s patron saint, Boniface, who was born in Crediton, the awards aim to honour church volunteers who go above and beyond “to serve the people of Devon with joy.” This marks the fourth year that the awards have taken place.
The Bishop of Plymouth, the Rt. Rev’d James Grier, said in his sermon: “These people are exceptional examples of what should be everyday life for Christians, they are the cream of the crop.
“We want to be people whose faith results in action, it doesn’t matter if we are ‘successful’ or not, we just keep plodding-on, keep going back to where we are called, keep serving.”
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