I hope camp was a good week for everyone who went. I heard that Jonathan was playing the banjo.
It is cloudy and windy here, and it rains almost every day. Quite a contrast from home.
We had a great trip to the Netherlands last week. Joanne's Oma is turning 90 later this year, and she is in good form. She and a few other relatives joined us for Joanne's birthday last Thursday. We really enjoyed spending the Lord's Day with the van Houdt family. In their town, everyone is closed for Sunday and the only activity is going to church morning and evening. The church has been there since missionaries displaced a site of pagan worship about 1000AD. The oldest part of the current building is from 1300AD. The church followed the local lord in joining the reformation, and it is still going! I appreciated the Psalms they sang, because that (and the benediction) was the only part of the service that I could decipher.
We had car trouble back in Northern Ireland, which ended up with us buying another car this week. There is nothing like a complication to help you make friends. We had people all over Northern Ireland that we don’t know trying to come up with a car for us. We are glad for those friendships, but we also hope this car will make it until the end of our trip.
I got to bring greetings from the OPC to the EPC presbytery meeting on Tuesday. It was a pleasure to meet about 30 ministers and elders. Halfway through the meeting, the moderator said: “it’s a good time to put the kettle on for tea,” and a few minutes later we took a break for tea and biscuits! A lot of the churches here are small, but the denomination is closely knit.
Next week, I will join their ministers' fraternal, and give a presentation on biblical sexual ethics. The following week is the start of two youth camps. These are an important and a beloved ministry—a lot of the adults in the church grew up attending these in the summer. Alie is excited to go the younger kids' camp, and I am speaking to the older kids each day for a week. About half of the kids attending will be from unchurched backgrounds. I will be speaking on the I AM statements in John.
My parents arrived in Northern Ireland last week, and we met up with them the night that we got back from the Netherlands (they kindly picked us up from the bus stop). Dad was preaching through the week at a church in Magherafelt (about an hour’s drive west of where we are living near Hillsborough). With our new car all sorted, we attended yesterday evening. It was great to have a chance to hear my dad preach. We also got to join for tea afterwards! The service started at 8pm, and it was after 11 when we finished tea, but it was actually still a little bit light outside.
That’s a little update from us. We miss everyone there, and hope you enjoy God's blessings on your worship and fellowship tomorrow.
Pastor Calvin Goligher