October 2014

Preaching in Rathgar Methodist Church, Brighton Road, Dublin yesterday morning. It is their 140th Anniversary Year. Thank God for faithful witnesses. Lovely lunch and conversation too with their Minister after worship. Thank you all.

What an inspirational evening at Autumn Soul in Bangor on 25 October ! 600 young people from all over Ireland seeking God. Just awesome.

Girls Brigade at Derry and Raphoe

Was at the Derry and Raphoe Diocese Synod on Wednesday 22 Oct and met up with some of our Girls Birigade company who were helping to serve the meal.

Yesterday I spent time with my mum in Belfast and talking with some other people about ways forward in helping our society deal with the past. Also, I met the Chair of the Belfast Islamic Society to explore how Methodist churches can be more supportive of Muslims who are subject to hate crimes in the community. Ended with a meeting which discussed whole-life Christian discipleship. An interesting day!

Yesterday...Stationing Committee this morning Such a responsibility as we pray and propose stationing for our ministers and their families. Then a high profile meeting of myself and other church leaders with Mervyn Storey, the new DSD Minister at Stormont. We were expressing concern for the poor and calling for clear information about the proposals for Welfare Reform to reduce growing anxiety about their content. The poor must not become political pawns.

Great day on Sunday to meet the folks at Larne.

Just in from a brilliant day (13 Oct) in West Cork visiting Revs Daphne Twinem, Derek Poole, Denis Maguire and spouses. We went to Drimoleague, Balineen, Dunmanway, Bandon and Clonakilty churches. Thanks to Bill and Val Mullally for taking us around. Nice fish for our evening meal with good conversation in The Speckled Door near the Old Head, Kinsale.

Thai ladies dancing

Thai ladies danced around the cross as part of the Harvest Thanksgiving Service in Cork Methodist Church on 12 October. Such a blessing!

With the stewards and Rev Jeremy Nicholl after morning service in Dundrum, Dublin, last Sunday.

I had a very encouraging time last weekend in Dublin with the Dundrum and Dun Laoghaire congregations. Dundrum had their Harvest Thanksgiving followed by lunch. Dun Laoghaire were dedicating their newly renovated church. They have done a marvellous job on that. The best of all, though, is that both churches are focused on sharing Jesus with people who are at present outside the church.

I attended a service in Armagh Cathedral last night (2 Oct) to welcome the Archbishop of Canterbury on a visit to Northern Ireland. It was a joyous occasion and he spoke of the need for the churches to be prayerful, hopeful and united in service.