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A South Wales Echo article describing the annual three-day Jehovah's Witnesses convention at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. "The huge event has called on the help of an army of 800 volunteer Witnesses from South Wales to help keep the stadium clean, tidy and running smoothly." The article is accompanied by a photograph by Peter Bolter with the caption: "CONFERENCE Jehovah's Witnesses at the Millennium Stadium".


Thousands celebrate at Stadium - Author/Byline: Alex Lemon

AROUND 10,000 Jehovah's Witnesses have been enjoying a celebration of their faith at the Millennium Stadium.

Men, women and children from all over South Wales and south west England are congregating for an annual three-day convention in Cardiff, entitled Zealous Kingdom Proclaimers.

The event, which started yesterday, gives Witnesses the chance to discuss their religion, hear about the experiences of others in their mission to spread Jesus' message and strengthen their beliefs.

The convention, one of 22 held throughout the UK each year, has been held in Cardiff for 30 years, but it is the first time it has taken place in the city's landmark stadium.

Previous gatherings have been held at Ninian Park, home of Cardiff City FC, and the old Cardiff Arms Park.

Convention administrator Roger Byng said: "Some would say Ninian Park is our home after 30 years of going there, but recent history would have us in Cardiff Arms Park.

"Now we are back at the stadium - and a fantastic stadium it is too. People are very impressed and there's a great atmosphere."

Today's programme includes song, prayers, full-immersion baptisms and symposia on glorifying faith in Jehovah and tests of faith.

Sunday's programme includes drama, a public discussion and talks aimed specifically at young Witnesses. The huge event has called on the help of an army of 800 volunteer Witnesses from South Wales to help keep the stadium clean, tidy and running smoothly.

Volunteer Janet Medcalf, from Cardiff West congregation, said: "The work is enjoyable because everybody does their bit.

"We work on rotas so we still get a chance to listen. I was listening this morning and I'll catch some more this afternoon, but people have been taking notes so we can keep up with what's happened."

Anton Irons, from London, travelled to the convention with his wife, who is originally from Cardiff.

"It's been an excellent day so far," he said. "I was looking round and thinking about the old stadium, which I really enjoyed, but this is even better."

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