The Irish RP Church and the Scottish RP Church work together on a Joint Mission Committee that oversees home mission work, overseas mission work, and short term mission teams, like GO Teams. Rev. Peter Loughridge, minister of North Edinburgh RPC is the Scottish representative on the Joint Mission Committee. Each year representatives from this Committee travel to the 4 Irish Presbyteries and the Scottish Presbytery and give an update on some aspect of the Committee’s work. This year the meetings for the Scottish Presbytery were held in Glasgow and Stranraer. Mr Robert Tait and Mr Robert McCaughan came to speak this year about the RP Relief Committee and the GO Relief Teams that are sent out.
The meeting in Glasgow was held on Tuesday the 28th May, and people from the Airdrie, Glasgow, and North Edinburgh congregations were all there. Rev. Peter Loughridge opened the meeting with Scripture reading, Psalms singing, and prayer, and then turned it over to the two Roberts.
Robert Tait explained a bit about the history of the Relief Committee. Rev Sam and Mrs Phemie Cromie were RP missionaries in Ethiopia as part of the Irish RP Mission work there many years ago. When they returned home they set up a fund to support some of the Ethiopian Christians from the Mission, and when they could no longer oversee this, they turned it over to the Irish RP Church who then set up a Relief Committee.
Robert McCaughan then went through a photo presentation of the different teams and work the Relief Committee has been involved in over the past 9 years. The work usually involves large teams of 30 plus people going at their own expense to build, refurbish, or repair buildings for Christian organisations. They have been involved in repairing and rebuilding orphanages in Romania, Christian camps in Transylvania, a Christian school in Zambia, apartments and classrooms for the London City Mission, and numerous other projects in different places in the world, as well as numerous refurbishment projects for RP churches in Nantes, Cookstown, Galway, and other places. Wherever they have gone, they have also shared the Gospel in various ways with those with whom they came in contact. Two of the points he emphasised were the way the Lord repeatedly provided for them in unexpected and abundant ways and that if the Lord gives you a desire and a willingness to come on one of these teams, there will be a job for you.
Robert Tait then spoke about the plans for the future. They intend to continue doing what they are doing, but they are also weighing up the possibilities of having their own project controlled and maintained year round by the RP Church. This could be anything from orphanages to care homes to schools to crisis pregnancy centres to addict rehabilitation centres, etc. He spoke of some of the pros and cons of this and asked for prayer for the work of the Relief Committee in general and especially as they think through all of this.
Rev. Peter Loughridge then closed the meeting in prayer, and there was a time for further conversations and chat over tea and coffee. It was a very informative evening and encouraging to hear of what the Lord is doing in different parts of the world.