First Presbyterian Church (Non-Subscribing), Warrenpoint
Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland

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News - 2010

Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan


During July we welcomed the Commissioners of the Presbytery as they prepared their Reports for the Visitation. The Visitation was held on Sunday 5th September and the Address was given by the Rev Ian Gilpin. The Moderator, Rt Rev Sam Peden, welcomed the congregation and the Presbytery and said how delighted he was to see so many children in the congregation. After the singing of the first hymn, the Rev Chris Wilson led the congregation in Prayer, and the Rev John Herron read the Scripture Reading.

After the singing of the second hymn, the congregation heard the splendid reports from Rev Robert McKee on Work and Witness; Mr Adrian Moir on Finance; Mr Bertie McClean on Property; and the Rev Peden on Records. The Reports were accepted by the congregation on the proposal of Mrs Ann Holmes and seconded by Mr David Moore.

The proceedings concluded with a final hymn and Rev Peden pronounced the Benediction and asked God's Blessing for the food. This was the signal for the Ladies to serve the refreshments. Miss Jayne Craven thanked the Ladies on behalf of the Presbytery.

On Sunday 3rd October we welcomed back former Minister, the Very Rev William McMillan, to conduct our Harvest Thanksgiving Service. The praise was led, as usual, by Warrenpoint Silver Band.

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JUNE 2010

Our Minister, Rev Hutton, conducted the "Songs of Praise Service" in Warrenpoint Orange Hall; this was a role formerly undertaken by Rev Jim Simms.

The Annual General Meeting arranged for Sunday, 7th March had to be postponed as our Honorary Treasurer, Mrs Elaine Crozier, had an accident and broke her wrist. However she was sufficiently recovered to be in attendance for the rescheduled meeting on Sunday 21st March, although her husband, Councillor Ian Crozier, presented the report on her behalf. Mrs Laura Wharton presented the Honorary Secretary's Report. The reports were duly accepted and all office bearers were re-elected.

The Heritage Lottery Fund withdrew its offer of grant aid for the church repairs and restoration scheme due to the fact that we failed to assure them that all the other funding was in place. At present we are reviewing our plans and hope to proceed with a reduced scheme, which we hope will receive NIEA grant aid, which was also offered.

Our Easter Day Service was held on Sunday, 4th April. It was hoped to have a special Birthday Party for Mrs Sadie Holmes on that day also. Unfortunately Sadie was taken into hospital the previous week, so the party had to be cancelled. We are pleased to report that Sadie has been discharged from hospital and is back in Rockfield Care Home.

On Sunday, 18th April, during Rev Hutton's holiday break in Scotland, the Rev Charles McCurdy conducted the service in the Rev Hutton's absence. Charles covered all three of Rev Hutton's charges on that particular Sunday.

The Sacrament of Holy Communion was observed at our Service on Sunday, 2nd May. The attendance was down on normal - probably as a direct result of the May Day holiday weekend.

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MARCH 2010

Our last report ended with the congregation looking forward to the Floral Art Demonstration by the Rev Mac in Warrenpoint Town Hall.

Unfortunately, when the big day arrived the hall was only half-full for this event. The Rev Mac was in his usual good form combining his artistic talent with his good humour, despite trying to amputate a finger about an hour before the show. But in true artistic spirit he was adamant that the show "must go on". Naturally his displays were greatly admired and the ladies had no trouble in selling enough raffle tickets to cover the expenses. The venture raised almost £1,500 for the Building Fund. We are greatly appreciative of Rev Mac and his assistant, and to our own ladies and Mr Norman Glass for transporting Rev Mac’s props.

Our Carol Service was held on Sunday, 6th December. Once again this quaint old Meeting House took on a wonderful Christmas character with candles and wonderful floral displays by Mrs Jean Glass. Many of the readers have been regulars with us over the last 13 years – as have the Warrenpoint Silver Band under their Director of Music, Mr Maurice McCabe. This year Alice and Hannah were also present to sing solo pieces for us – Alice’s singing of "O Holy Night" was magnificent. The collection raised £200 for the Hospice.

On Sunday, 20th December, the Service took the form of a Christmas Service. Afterwards the ladies served tea, coffee, mince pies and shortbread. In the midst of the refreshments we had a surprise visit from Santa Claus, who brought a present for each child.

During the year Mrs Elaine Crozier has been unwell and unable to attend our services. We wish Elaine a speedy recovery and look forward to welcoming her back again, along with her mother, Molly and husband, Ian. Both Molly and Ian have also been unwell. To them and to all the other members of the congregation who have been in hospital and to Gary and Sadie, who are in nursing homes, we extend our prayers for a speedy recovery and better health in 2010.

During Elaine’s absence, Mrs Doris Hutton has administered the FWO collections, and we thank her for adding this task to all the many other duties she performs for our Warrenpoint Church.

Our New Year Resolution is that this year we must complete the repairs – the only obstacle is that we have still to raise approximately £38,000 before we can start. We are still investigating other grant aiding bodies but naturally finances are still very restricted at this time. But we hope and pray that a benefactor may come along.

It was with deep regret that we learned of the death of Mr Kenneth Brown, the stepbrother of our Minister, Rev Norman Hutton. His Funeral Service was held in our Church, which is just a few hundred yards down the Burren Road from Kenny’s home. Kenny was a director of Phoenix Merchants and hence he was well known in the surrounding area. He was formerly a scout-leader, a member of Newry Rugby Club and a member of Kilkeel Golf Club. His wife Oonagh is the Vice Principal of Sacred Heart Grammar School in Newry. All this vast connection meant that the little church was full to capacity. Rev Hutton conducted the service, the scripture readings and personal reflection were given by his brother Nigel, and the singing was led by a section of the Choir of the Sacred Heart Grammar School under their Head of Music Mrs Linda Turley.

It was a great tribute to this small congregation that they were able to cope with this large undertaking at so short a notice. We are particularly indebted to Mr and Mrs Norman Glass and Mr and Mrs Ian Wharton for all their work. We would like to express our deepest sympathy to Rev and Mrs Hutton, to Kenny’s widow Oonagh, to her children Stephen, Ana and Megan, and to the whole Brown family circle. We also extend our sympathy to Mrs Doris Hutton on the death of her aunt Mrs Lena Bradley.

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I give you a new commandment: love one another; as I have loved you, so you are to love one another. If there is this love among you, then everyone will know that you are my disciples.

John 13:34-35

Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

2 Corinthians 3:17b