First Holywood Gallery
The Annual Harvest Thanksgiving services were held on Sunday 13th Oct. The Rev Nigel Craig, convenor of the vacancy, was our guest speaker at the morning service. The service was well attended and the special Harvest choir and children's choir led the praise.
Blythswood Care collected 114 Christmas shoe boxes to distribute to families in Eastern Europe.
The new banner proclaiming 'His Love endures forever' is now hanging in the Worship Centre.
The Annual GB and BB Enrolment service was held on Sunday 3rd November.
Farewell to Noble & Florence
Noble retired from the ministry of 1st Holywood on the 1st September. At the end of the service a gift from the congregation to Noble and Florence was presented by Stanley Mulligan who had been Clerk of Session when Noble was installed as minister in 1997. Following the service a farewell lunch was enjoyed at the Clandeboye Lodge hotel which was attended not only by members of the congregation but also by former assistant ministers and their families.
GB & BB
2019 marked the 70th Anniversary of our GB Company. The special guest at the Annual Display was Mrs Eva Reilly and she also presented the prizes to the girls. On the Sunday following the display a special Anniversary service was held which was attended by Captains, officers and friends of the Company.
The Anchor Boys and Juniors of the BB held a very enjoyable display later in the month at which the prizes were presented by Nathena Burnside.
The Easter celebrations commenced on Palm Sunday with the children of Sunday School and GLEEM enacting the Palm Sunday service. The Young Instramentalists also played. On Good Friday after the time of Prayer there was a Breakfast followed by the Walk of Witness around the churches of the town. Much appreciated refreshments was then served in the Worship Centre. On Easter Sunday the church was filled with members of congregation and friends worshipping our risen Lord.
Christmas 2018 was celebrated by the Tots R Us group with special treats for the children and an enactment of the Christmas Story. The Wednesday morning Ladies Group enjoyed mince pies and shortbread at their last meeting before the holiday. A delicious Christmas lunch was served to the older members of the congregation. This was much appreciated and the 'craic' was good. Christine, Billy and Florence led the Carol Singing. There were many parents and friends of the children in Sunday School and Gleem for the children's Carol Service on the 16th December.
Christmas Festivities (Cont)
Nicola demonstrated the making of 'Love Hearts' at the PW Christmas meeting. Santa visited the Anchor Boys and the Explorers and had gifts for all. On the 23rd December there was a 'full house' for the Carol Service as many family members had returned for Christmas. singing was led by the church choir and the Youth Singers. On Christmas morning the congregations of High St and Bangor Rd worshiped together.
The Watch Night service on December 31st heralded in 2019.
The Rev Alan Johnston was Inducted as Associate Minister on Sunday 6th January.
A healthy breakfast for the 20-40s was held at the beginning of February. The children had theirs in the Houston Hall and played games afterwards.
On the 24th February six new elders were ordained and installed by a commission of the East Belfast Presbytery. This was followed by refreshments in the Houston Hall.
Early Summer 2019
The Moderator Charles McMullan visited the congregation on United Appeal Sunday.
The PW outing was to the Belfast Synagogue followed by a meal at the Royal Belfast Golf Club. On May 19th a lunch in aid of Christian Aid was held in the Houston Hall. That evening Sandra Gallagher was ordained as a ruling Elder by a commission of the East Belfast Presbytery.
Tots R Us had their last meeting of the year on 11th June.
Holiday Bible Club 2019 and congregational picnic
Ancora was the title of the Holiday Bible club this year held on Monday 28th July - friday 2nd August.
Children from P1-P7 enjoyed a week of activities including singing, crafts and Bible stories. Highlights of the week included the ever popular 'Fun with the foremen' and picnic at Seapark and a BBQ for the children, young people, parents and friends on the Friday evening. There were also evening activities for teenagers which included 'Cage Football' and other games.
The picnic planned for 18th August was held in the Houston Hall because of rain. The food and chat was good!