The first ever Edinburgh GO team took place from 20th-23rd October 2017. The team arrived in Edinburgh on Friday morning to serve alongside the group in North Edinburgh, a church plant in a more socially deprived part of the city. The team consisted of members from both Northern Ireland and Scotland, and were also joined by several people from the North Edinburgh congregation. Team members were: Ken Nelson, Sarah-Jane Wilson, Calvin Quigley, Jess Muir, Anah Laverty, Anselm McDonnell, Abigail McLean and Esther McCollum.

After a quick introduction and breakfast of bacon butties together at Peter and Emma Loughridge’s, the team headed out to make a dent on the 7500 leaflets to be given out. The leaflets had the title of ‘What has God to say to you?’ and look at the theme of how although we can change many external factors in our lives (new houses, new jobs new relationships etc), we cannot deal with our hearts and we need the good news of Jesus Christ to regenerate us. We enjoyed lunch together and then more distribution. Really good progress was made and we covered all of the areas we were hoping to cover and more.

Saturday saw another busy day of leaflet distribution around North Edinburgh as the GO team were joined by others from both Edinburgh and Glasgow. We continued to make good progress throughout the morning and afternoon; of the 7500 we hoped to give out only 350 were left after the two days! Saturday was also a day of new experiences, with some GO team members enjoying views over Edinburgh from 22 storeys up, and others learning the art of cheese slicing with a cheese plane (slicer)! We were able to spend time as a team together on both Friday and Saturday evening, looking at God’s word and worshipping God together. Others in the congregation also joined for this time.

The GO Team spent the Sabbath worshipping with the church in North Edinburgh. It was lovely to join with both those we had met earlier in the weekend, and those we had not yet met to praise God together.

There was something satisfying about looking out of the window to see the tower blocks we had delivered leaflets the day before and exciting to think that each home had received the gospel message and information about the church and how God could be working through that.

We enjoyed a church lunch in the school after the service which was an opportunity for fellowship together. After this the team enjoyed a chilled Sunday afternoon and a walk to Cramond. In the evening service we looked at what loving each other as a family within the church looks like and looked forward to the church plant becoming established as a congregation later in the week.

The GO team started to disperse and head home for university, school or work between Sabbath evening and Monday morning, leaving the remaining few loyal members to boss out the last of the leaflets (shout out to Anselm and Abi!).

We give thanks to God for all that the team was able to achieve and for the various ways in which He answered prayers. We were constantly reminded of God’s goodness to us – from two days of beautiful sunshine when delivering leaflets to being able to access most flat blocks, God answered many of our prayers. We are also thankful for the good relationships within the team, and with those in the church. The team would like to express their thanks to the people of the church in North Edinburgh for their kindness and hospitality to the GO team, and for their friendliness and enthusiasm to serve the Lord in the community. It has been such a joy and privilege to be able to spend time with the church in North Edinburgh and we look forward to hearing how God works in the future in this part of the city.

Esther McCollum, Glenmanus RPC (Portrush)