Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Divine Healing Service at St Anne's Cathedral: That would be an ecumenical matter

On the 17th May the Annual Day of Prayer for Renewal and Revival will be held at St Annes Cathedral, Belfast. This event is organised by Divine Healing Ministries and is now in its sixth year. The theme for this year's event is 'Moving Forward Together', and when the list of speakers at the event is examined it becomes evident exactly what is meant by 'Moving Forward Together'. The line up is as ecumenical as it gets with a Church of Ireland Canon, two Presbyterian ministers and two Roman Catholic priests taking part. Add to this a speaker from the Roman Catholic ministry of Koinonia John the Baptist and speakers from Transformations Ireland and 24/7 Prayer Ireland, both ecumenical organisations, all organised by Divine Healing Ministries, an organisation which is itself deeply ecumenical. Such a cross community array of speakers makes it clear that their desire to move forward together does not simply mean Roman Catholic and Protestant living peaceably together side by side, but the two communities united together in one Christian faith.

Full details of those taking part in the service can be found here

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Sunday morning only?

The Bermuda Triangle is well known as bring that triangular region of the sea between Bermuda, Florida and Puerto Rico where aircraft and ships have been reported to have mysteriously disappeared. Many reasons have been given in an effort to explain their disappearance, from human error, violent weather and the gulf stream, to the more outlandish claims of supernatural and extra-terrestrial activity. At the end of the day however the answer to many of the disappearances is that we do not know the reason. What is not in doubt however is the infamy that is associated with that particular region of the Atlantic Ocean. The name of the Bermuda Triangle is instantly connected with unexplained disappearances.

Within the church today there is also a 'Bermuda Triangle' to be found, where instead of planes and boats, people go mysteriously missing. Likewise little explanation can be found for their disappearance. What is this 'Bermuda Triangle' within the church that we are talking about? It is the Sunday evening service. Between the morning and evening services a mysterious disappearance takes place and great multitudes cannot be found at the latter meeting who were present in the morning. Even when considering legitimate reasons why some people cannot be present very often the mystery still remains. Where have they gone? Are they at another church, are they at home, perhaps they are visiting friends or family, or maybe they are asleep. Perhaps the weather is favourable and they are at the beach or spending the time in some pursuit of leisure. Yet really the answer is that we simply do not know.