Rathfriland GO Team 2008

Before I put on the photos from the weekend I better do a post on Rathfriland if I want to have any chance of getting 5 stars in Mrs G’s Book of Blogs (tho I fear I face some stiff competition from Norwegian flower pot blogs)! Especially after she was emotionally scarred by the picture of Stevie in the last post…


So anyway, the team arrived in Rathfriland last Monday morning after my heartfeld plea at the CY Summer Conf (where I was NOT laughing at my own joke – Jonny, Joel!) failed to pick up any new members for the team (and in fact for a time during the next week we were reduced to 2 before an 11th hour offer from Catherine Morrison brought us back up to a healthy total of 3).

Those 3 again…

The activities for the week were to do door-to-door during the days, and meetings in the evenings (preceded by a time of prayer), on the theme “God changes lives”. On the doors we were accompanied by Barry and the indefatigable Tom Cromie. Speakers at the meetings included the minister of 1st Rathfriland (“God is changing lives in Rathfriland”) and Barry (“God changed the life of a famous politician” – Wilberforce).

Ok, I’ll spare you another photo of us, here’s one from the pilg!

The best thing about the team was getting to know the people of the congregation, and we were out at different members’ houses for tea in the evenings, as well as being wonderfully provided for by Hazel at lunch times :-)


On the afternoon off on Wednesday, Mrs G took the girls shopping and I went to see Gary, who was house-sitting a mansion.

On the Thursday morning, Prof. Robert McCollum (the distinction is becoming more necessary than ever!) came to give a presentation to the older people/people who were free during the day on the Covenanters.

Rathfriland Covenant Renewal 1854

In the evening there was a Coffee Bar for the young people of the congregation, although with pizza and ice cream sabbaths / floats (sortof like milk floats but not) instead of coffee. We also tried to encourage them to get more involved in the wider denom.

…but just in case they don’t, here’s a photo of them playing volleyball!

A healthy amount of football was also played

The team departed on Thursday night, as we were going on to the 2 weekends, having had a thoroughly enjoyable week in Rathfriland. We got to meet some great people, including some ‘outside the box thinkers’, and can now pray for Rathfriland with a far greater knowledge of what’s going on.

And so do please that God would keep on changing lives in Rathfriland, more and more, and that He would use the booklets given out, the conversations had, and the talks at the meetings to bring people to Him.


Enniskillen GO Team 2008

Just a few snaps really as I’m off to Dromore in a minute and we were busy entertaining our new minister and his family yesterday :-) (Obviously, the longer he goes without finding out about SWS, the better for all concerned!)

A brief run down of the week: Saturday – leaflets, Sunday – first ever Enniskillen RP church service! (well, for a very long time), Monday – leaflets, Tues – leaflets/show, Wed – show, Thurs – Marble Arch / BBQ, Fri – home (and Bible readings Sun-Thurs evenings)

Cameron and Elyse – Leaflets were given out to the 6,000 homes of Enniskillen

Hugh and Betty came every day and helped us

On the Tuesday I got into a debate with a guy in the most nationalist housing estate in Enniskillen about what my city is called. However, not being sponsored by the Ulster Scots, I was the one arguing that I could call it ‘Derry’ if I wanted to!


A lot of uno was played. And a bit of Phase 10, but it required too much thinking for most occasions. Don’t think anybody got further than phase 5


On Tuesday night, me, Andrew and Peter went to the presentation of the call, while the rest of them got started at the Enniskillen Show. Of course, we all expected it just to be the presentation of the calls and we didn’t expect we’d actually be getting an answer on the night!

The phone networks were red hot afterwards!

The team’s main role at the show was to do craft with children (all craft items of course coming with bible verses on them!) while the members of the home section tried to talk to people who stopped at the stand.

Please join our chruch

Wednesday night was of course the long awaited night of Neil’s party, but of course it would just have been mad to go to it, especially seeing the Bible Reading only started at half 8. However here are some pictures of it anyway.


The artist formerly known as Maccus

Carla and Alex

Beth, Joanne and Alex

Carla and Laura

These are all from the after-party – no pics of the party itself seeing it was basically finished by about 11! And we thought we’d be fashionably late!

On Thursday, after a g prayer time, we went to the Marble Arch Caves – we had been going to take some of the church kids but they weren’t able to make it.


Dave and Pete (as we tended not to refer to them as)



Catherine and Ruth


The brain

Long John Silver – our guide may have been wondering why the first time she said millions of years we all laughed at her…

Then we went for a walk to see the Marble Arch

The Marble Arch – yes, that is actually all there is to it. The caves are named after that!!!


CTI wannabes

Peter up to mischief

Then we came back, via Cavan :-), and had a BBQ


The grown-ups

Elyse got up at 6am to make buns for Heather’s birthday. Me and Carla were up earlier tho…


Carla and Georgie

Please continue to pray for the work in Enniskillen as they try and establish a church there.

Did I mention I now have a minister?! :-)

Galway GO Team: Change of Date

Galway have decided against going head-to-head with Camp and Ted and have changed their GO Team to:

Saturday 28th June – Saturday 5th July. (Camp is 5th-12th July).

GalwayGOteam06 006

And on the subject of GO teams, there haven’t been very many applications so far, so if you are planning on going on a team could you please apply soon. The deadline for applications is Saturday 19th April. And if you’re not planning on going on a team could you please apply soon anyway.

Airdrie G Team 2008

And ‘G’ is the only way to describe it. Although due to an inspired decision to write the Messenger report in the minibus on the way to the airport on the way home (after having initially been up for writing it as we went along), most of the craic should actually make it into the Messenger. However, in the intervening few years (make those jokes while you can people, their time is nearly over!) here’s a few snaps and if I can remember any of the stuff we thought was too extreme for the Messenger I’ll throw that in too!

Paul took some well deserved time off to join up with the team

Some of the locals at the bowling

action shot
Action shot

me at bowling
A PB of 127

jonny stevie
Ulsterville Gardens on Tour 2008. They saw Pancakes at Belfast City on the way home


lainey stevie
Evie and Lainey

stephen claire
Plenty of ‘Oh!’-ing went on throughout the team

claire hayley emma
Claire, Hayley, Emma…and Joel trying to look intelligent :-P

airdrie homeschooled
I would have been loved to have been there when either Debbie or Hayley went up to Airdrie’s latest American arrivals and said “Hi. I’m homeschooled too!”

Cephas – kept us all fed

george paul
George conversing with Paul

debbie louise
Louise and Debbie

probable cream bun moment
A rare time of schooling


megan hayley
Megan and Hayley


The lads finishing off the pudding

Friday night: games in the church


me stevie
Me and Stevie

emma lorna
Emma and Lorna

paul stace
Paul and Stacey


claire paul mr k
The evening was rounded off with a Mr. Kebab of course, though as Carla has pointed out Paul ruined his by putting mayo on it…

After finishing off the leaflets we were doing (only did about 7,000 cos we were knocking – leaving the rest for the yanks), we went to Edinburgh on Saturday afternoon for a Covenanter Tour and tea. Once Beth finally found the car park that is…

covenanter tour group except those talking to beulah!
By this point, some of the group had decided they’d rather talk to Beulah and Carol, who we met at Greyfriars

We sent Conor in to look for Walker

Pining for Bapman

part of prayermeeting
Part of the prayer meeting on Sunday morning

steps group
Distributors and helpers

team photo
Team photo

Totally amazing like. Once again. No Charles Eleven children’s address this time, although SAQ asked ‘What is love?’ and young Joshua said ‘When you don’t get your own way all the time’. Cue much awwww-ing and laughter!!

GO Rally Presentation 2008

I was extremely jealous of the snow. If anyone tells you that there’s more snow in Scotland than there is in Northern Ireland – don’t believe them. The full-size presentation can be downloaded from here (34 MB). Billy Hamilton’s talk was recorded, I’ll put it up as soon as I get it.

Stranraer G Team 07

Members: Quite a lot. See photos (courtesy Bob P)

Activities: Leaflet Dist, Fellowship time with congregation, a few people went down to some central-type place to talk to people, singing in an old people’s home

Croissants for breakfast

It seemed like a good idea at the time…

Bob snapped these in some castle

Carla modelling the t-shirt! There were only 10 of them, and I think the Irish contingent took them back home again. Gutted! It’s the only reason I went!!

Note the newly painted church bit, looks good. New sign too.

A history plaque that wasn’t there before. GM (not GMO!) says its known locally as “the Presbyterian Church”.


stranraer lorna 1

stranraer lorna 2
Heather looking pure distressed at the shenanigans

stranraer cti
CTI 1 Lorna 0