Dervock village lies less than 10 miles inland from the North Coast of Ireland and less than 5 miles from the town of Ballymoney. “Covenanters”, or Reformed Presbyterians, have had a witness in the Dervock and Derrykeighan areas for more than 350 years, dating back to the ministry of David Houston in the late 1600s. Dervock, along with Kilraughts, was officially organised as a congregation in 1783, under the ministry of Rev. James McKinney. By God’s grace, the church maintains its gospel witness today in the surrounding rural community of North Antrim. We currently have seven ruling elders and our teaching pastor, Rev. Philip Dunwoody, was ordained and installed in February 2015 – he got married to Hannah four months later.
Dervock has always had links with Covenanters across the world. The first organising pastor, Rev. McKinney, later emigrated to America and was instrumental in establishing an American Reformed Presbytery. More recently, former pastors such as Rev. Edward Donnelly (minister in Dervock 1968-1972) and Rev. Norris Wilson (1987-2004) worked or studied with Reformed Presbyterian churches in the United States. To this day, some of our members have extended family in America and Australia.
The congregation energetically keeps up ministries both for the wider community and for building up each other in the Lord. As well as regular worship services, Bible study and prayer times, on-going ministries include Parents & Toddlers, Friendship Group for seniors, the Lighthouse Youth Club in the autumn and spring, periodical tract distribution and a summer Bible Club. Recently, the congregation has enjoyed partnering with Dervock Presbyterian Church and their pastor, Rev. Scott Moore, who share our desire to see more local people come to know Jesus as Lord and Saviour.
The church is thankful for the good gifts God has given us, both practically and spiritually. It is a great joy for older members to see our young people maturing in their faith and beginning to serve their congregation and denomination with the gifts God has given them. We continue to pray that God will mature us all through the preaching of His Word, and that he would be pleased to add to our numbers through our witness to the Kingship of Jesus Christ.
Rev. Philip Dunwoody