Thousands attend Cyril and Methodius celebrations at Velehrad

Thousands of people descended on the Velehrad pilgrimage site to attend celebrations marking the 1153th anniversary of the arrival of Saints Cyril and Methodius to Great Moravia to spread the Christian faith and lay the foundations of literacy with the Glagolitic alphabet. The celebrations opened on Tuesday evening with a charity concert within the Days of People of Goodwill. On Wednesday they culminated with a divine mass at the Velehrad Basilica celebrated by Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet. The events at Velehrad this year include an exhibition of Byzantine icons by Bulgarian artist Stefka Nikolova, lectures and public debates.