Carrickfergus GO Team (Thursday)

After team devotions we headed to the Carrick markets to help Carrick RPC with their first pop-up café. This gave us the opportunity to engage with the locals and discuss hope, as referred to in our leaflets.

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After lunch we continued our leaflet distribution, reaching areas further west in the town.

With the rain beginning to pour, we were all thankful for a warm house and plenty of food, provided by the Stevens' family. Reenergised, we set off to Eden Community Centre where we joined the CY in their games' night, competing in volleyball and unihoc.

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To finish the evening, the CY returned to the church where the committee kindly provided chocolate bar milkshakes. A few of our team members shared their testimony and school experiences to encourage the young members of Gods power and continued help with them in school. David Duly, a member of the congregation, came to speak to the team with words of encouragement from Psalm 131 and we closed the evening in prayer.

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Prayer Points

  • Continue to pray for the young people of the church, that they will have been blessed by the testimonies tonight and will continue to grow and come to CY throughout the year
  • Give thanks for the people who have taken an interest in the leaflets and pray for others who have received it
  • Pray for Café 48 tomorrow morning and for the family BBQ in the evening, that those who have been invited will come along
  • Pray for safe journeys as the team departs tomorrow (Friday)
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Carrickfergus GO Team (Wednesday)

This morning the team met for devotions in the church, after which we headed out on leaflet distribution. Each leaflet had information on the church and included a small section on hope. 

After lunch, the team went to the Chester Care Home in Whitehead, at which one of the elderly members of Carrickfergus congregation now resides. The team sang from Psalm 23, 65 and a variety of the other old version Psalms and the Rev Harry Coulter gave a short address.

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Then it was tea time! The team was hosted tonight by Margaret Kerr. We enjoyed this time to relax and chill as a group, before heading back to the church for a time of prayer. Asking God that he would lead and guide the team in the week ahead, and that there would be a response from the community regarding the leaflets.

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Prayer points:

  • We would greatly appreciate prayer that we would be able to make contacts in Carrickfergus through the leaflets.
  • That we would have good conversations at the pop up cafe and doing door to door work tomorrow.
  • Pray that we would have favourable weather to be able to distribute more leaflets 
  • Young people would come along to the C.Y meeting tomorrow night to hear Gods word.

Galway GO Team Update: Monday & Tuesday

The final Bible study on Monday morning focused on ‘Give us this day our daily bread’. The complete dependence of all people on God was considered. The team also focused on how Christians need to recognise the many good things that come from God. Following this the team continued to distribute the ‘4You’ magazine.

In the afternoon the bookshop was manned by James and Daniel. Additionally, a stall was set up on Shop Street and it provided free Christian literature to anyone who wanted it. This stall was overseen by Patrick, Elisabeth, Bethany and Rachel. The remainder of the team attempted to do some door-to-door work. A questionnaire was utilised around the doors to spark conversations and to see what people believed concerning; the problems of the world, God, Jesus and the Bible. Many people were willing to chat and several good and encouraging conversations were had.

Mr. Matthew Brennan spoke in the evening at the arranged public meeting. He spoke openly concerning his upbringing through an orphanage and the abuse he suffered and the resulting long-term impacts of the abuse. Matthew pointed to how God provided for him and guided him towards a sure and certain hope. He even showed how God has used his bad experiences of life to help others struggling with similar problems. Those that attended the meeting stayed behind and spoke with the congregation and team.

The team met for breakfast on Tuesday morning in a nearby restaurant before travelling back home.

Prayer Points:

Give thanks for the week and for God’s provision throughout the week. Give thanks that the weather was favourable and dry when the team was out.

Give thanks that 2000 ‘What is the Point of Life?’ booklets were distributed and give thanks that 1500 ‘4You’ magazines were also distributed. Pray that they would be read, and God would use them to open people’s eyes.

Pray for those that spoke to the team at the book stall or on the doors. Pray that people would consider the questions posed and that the Spirit would be at work in their lives.

Pray for those that attended Matthew’s talk and pray that they would be convicted by what they have heard. Pray that they too would desire to have this same sure and certain hope through Christ.

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Galway GO Team Update: Sunday

Rev. Peter Jemphrey preached on the parable of the Persistent Widow (Luke 18) in the morning service. He showed how Christians ought to remember God’s identity and their own identity in Christ whilst praying to God. Following the service there was a church lunch which was well attended. Many from the congregation remained to meet the team. Additionally, several newcomers were out at church, some were tourists whilst some were new students in the area.

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Due to bad weather, the team was unable to get out to do street ministry in the afternoon. Instead the team took some time to relax.

In the evening the church bible study was again on the Lord’s Prayer. This time the petition ‘your will be done on earth as it is in heaven’ was studied. The implications of complete surrender to God’s will were considered at length. After the bible study, the GO Team were interviewed for the benefit of the congregation. Each team member had to share one encouragement and one discouragement that they have faced in their Christian lives. The hope was that each listener could identify with and be encouraged by the team’s answers as the GO Team showed great honesty in their answers.

Prayer Points:

Give thanks to God for the blessing of His day. Give thanks for the preaching of the word in Galway and give thanks for the time of fellowship enjoyed after the service. Give thanks for the visitors and students that came to church and pray that they would feel blessed by their time with the congregation.

Pray that the team would have strength to see out their last full day of work on Monday.

Pray again that Monday’s public meeting would be well attended. Pray that God would be with Mr. Matthew Brennan and that the Spirit would be working in the lives of the listeners.

Pray for those who have received literature through the doors. Pray that they would read either the booklet or the magazine and that their eyes could be opened by God.  

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Galway GO Team Update: Saturday

Friday’s Bible Study focused on the line ‘Your Kingdom Come’ from the Lord’s Prayer. We focused on what this meant for our lives and the reality of God’s Kingdom for those that we would interact with. Following this the team distributed the remaining ‘What’s the Point of Life’ booklets. We also distributed a Magazine called ‘4You’ which is an Irish Christian Magazine.

After lunch the team continued distribution. Stephen and Bethany were covering the bookshop. Once again in the evening the team engaged in some open-air preaching. Billy Hamilton spoke first on ‘What are you Worth?’. Stephen Fallows then spoke concerning four different hearts that people in the world can have. Peter Jemphrey spoke last on the Titanic and how we can learn lessons from It to avoid an even greater tragedy in our own lives. Many people stopped and listened for parts of the talks but very few remained for the whole duration of the talks.

The evening was closed with some team devotions and prayer.

Prayer Points;

Give thanks for the many booklets given out. Pray that people would read them and seek to find out more and would get in contact with the congregation.

Pray that the Galway congregation would be encouraged by the presence of the GO Team this week and pray that the team members could benefit from meeting the congregation.

Pray that those who listened to the open-air talks would think about what they heard and that the Spirit would be at work in the lives.

Pray that people would respond to the invites for Mr. Matthew Brennan’s public meeting on ‘Orphaned, Institutionalised, and Alone: A Sligo Man’s Journey to Hope’. Pray that God would be with Matthew as he prepares for the meeting.

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Galway GO Team Update: Friday

The Galway GO Team consists of Elisabeth Moore (Lisburn), James Heggarty (Carrick), Stephen Fallows (Gateway) Bethany Smyth (Convoy), Daniel McCollum (Ballyclabber), Matthew Magee (Faughan), Thomas and Rachel Jemphrey (Galway) and Patrick Hamilton (Galway). Patrick is leading the GO Team this year.

The team met on Thursday night and had the first team study focusing on prayer and more specifically the Lord's Prayer. Thusday morning also began with another study in the Lord's Prayer.

Following the study, the team began distributing a free booklet by Mez McConnell called 'What's the point of Life?' as well as invites to a Public Meeting on Monday. The Rev. Matthew Brennan will give his testimony at the meeting.

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In the afternoon, most of the team continued distribution. However, two team members (Elisabeth and Matthew) served their afternoon manning the Galway Bookshop.

After dinner the team particiapted in some street evangelism. The first street talk focused on Solomon and posed the question of, 'Is there life after birth?'. The second talk was on Elvis and how Jesus is the true King.

Prayer Points:

Give thanks that the whole team has arrived safely.

Give thanks that the team got dry weather when it was needed and pray that the weather would continue to be favourable.

Give thanks that 2000 booklets were distributed.

Pray for those that listened to the open air talks. Several stopped, listened and engaged. Pray that the Spirit would be at work in their lives and that they would honestly consider what they have heard.

Pray for the Public Meeting on Monday. Pray that the invites would be taken up and that a good crowd would arrive. Pray that God would be pleased to speak through Matthew Brennan.

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Milford & Letterkenny GO Team (Wednesday & Thursday)

One key aspect of this GO Team has been the time that we have spent together in prayer. We have spent time praising God for his character and works, praying for him to build up his kingdom in Donegal, and interceding for fellow believers as they seek to serve him. It has been helpful to consider what Scripture has to say about prayer, and to use some of the examples of prayer it gives us as aids to help us in our praying.

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We're thankful for how God has greatly helped us in the Holiday Bible Club over the last two days. On Wednesday Laramie explained how Jesus is the light of the world (John 8:12) and on Thursday Ben taught the children that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). The children have continued to listen well and even though the clouds have been threatening, we are thankful for dry weather. Quite a number of parents have spent time milling about at the park and this has provided us with great opportunities to talk with them.

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We've also spent time going from door to door in Milford in order to speak with them about the place of the gospel in Ireland today. God has blessed us with some interesting conversations and we are praying that the very fact we took the time to knock on people's doors would lead them to read one of the four gospels.

On Wednesday evening we met at the Loughridge's home for dinner and had a second evening of discussion. This time we shared some of our favourite verses and books of the Bible. It was especially encouraging to hear people share how God has used particular passages in painful and testing moments of their lives. We also discussed practical tips for making the most of our daily devotions. It has been encouraging throughout this week to open up with one another, whether by sharing our testimonies or by discussing our walks with God.

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On Thursday evening, Billy & Anne welcomed us to their home and we enjoyed getting to know them better. The team's resident mechanic particularly enjoyed some very technical discussion about farm machinery!

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PRAYER POINTS FOR FRIDAY

Tomorrow is the final day of the Holiday Bible Club and some of the children will be away. However please pray that we would still have a good turnout. 

Rebekah will be teaching the children that Jesus is the good shepherd who laid down his life for his sheep. Please pray that the Holy Spirit would work through her.

In the evening we will be attending a Milford congregational BBQ. Please pray that this would be an encouraging time of fellowship and pray that those who have been especially invited would also come along.

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Milford & Letterkenny GO Team (Tuesday)

Tuesday morning, after morning worship and prayers for the day's events, we finalised the preparations for the first Holiday Bible Club of the week. The theme of our HBC is the "I Am"s of Jesus.

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We began the week with Jonny's talk on Jesus as the Bread of Life with Rebekah in charge of the corresponding memory verse. The weather was quite pleasant if a bit grey but it didn't bother the children in the slightest, they were too engrossed into the story of feeding the five thousand!

In the afternoon, we set up for the Lunch Bunch involving a fun table quiz which included a round of Dingbats, a music round and an animal facts round. There was a lot of fun had in the quiz with a lot of conversations being struck up. Mark Loughridge gave an epilogue on the conversion of Mitsuo Fuchita, the man who led the attack on Pearl Harbour, from bitterness to love and forgiveness and he challenged us to do likewise. Following this, the winners of the quiz were announced and awarded with chocolates.

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We decided to rest up a bit before venturing off to Laramie's house for dinner. There, we were fed like kings with a large selection of meals, including six different types of fish which caught Ben's attention! Some friends and family joined us for the food and fellowship and seemed to get along quite well with our group and joined in with our games. It was encouraging to hear more of what God has been doing in people's lives.

By the end of the night, Oisin had accumulated a large collection of crackers which he was most pleased about!

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Laramie Carey

Milford & Letterkenny GO Team (Sunday & Monday)

Thanks so much for praying: we've had a really great start to the Letterkenny and Milford GO team. The team consists of Ben Matthess, Laramie Carey, Rebekah Moore, Georgie Allen, Oisin McDonnell, and Anna Coulter. 

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In the afternoon, we spent an hour distributing invitations for the Bible club which is scheduled to run this Tuesday to Friday. 

Members of both Letterkenny and Milford met with the team in Milford RPC for a time of praise and prayer in the evening followed by a time of fellowship. 

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Monday brought with it a day of preparation for the events scheduled for the rest of the week. In the morning, the team met at Jonny and Ruth's for a time of prayer. We spent time praising God for his character, using Scripture to help us in our praying, and focusing on specific needs of members of the congregation.

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Talks were then prepared, the church was cleaned, and quizzes and games were planned. A lot of artistic effort and thought went into our memory verses for the week! 

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Lisa and Sergio kindly invited the team for dinner, and we spent time discussing the ways in which each of us had become Christians. It was so encouraging to see how God has been working in our lives and we have lots of reasons to praise him! We're praying that God would use these times of encouragement to spur us on and to spur on members of both congregations. Later in the week we'll be spending time discussing aspects of living the Christian life and we're looking forward to more encouragements.

PRAYER POINTS:

Give thanks for the great fun and fellowship had by all the team so far, and the safety in travel to Donegal. 

Please pray for good numbers at the Bible club, and that that God would speak to each of the children through the talks on the great "I am"s of Scripture. Pray for good weather as the club is held outdoors in a local park. 

Pray that the Lunch Bunch scheduled for Tuesday would run smoothly, that the quiz would be enjoyed by all, and good conversations would be had between the team and the older folk. 

Pray that more contacts in the community would be made through the door to door work which will take place later in the week DV. 

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Newry GO Team Update: Friday

The final day of Newry GO Team opened with devotions, led by Jacob; a good reminder to look out for ‘almost Christians’ and to make sure we ourselves aren’t ‘almost Christians’. The kids were as enthusiastic and lively as they were the first day of the HBC. Ruth tempted the kids not to eat a marshmallow which coincided with her talk as David was tempted to kill Saul in the desert of Engedi. As Newry GO Team tradition the final quiz took place in the form of pie the leader which was very entertaining for all. 
Afterwards the team headed to Friar Tucks for our last meal together. Unfortunately due to the weather the street outreach did not take place. We had a BBQ for the youth in the evening, it was very encouraging to see their parents come and some new faces too.

Please pray that they will attend church and for the public meeting on Monday night.

Sarah Moorcroft