RPCI | Eastern Presbytery | Belfast (Northern Ireland)
- Organized: 2017 (Society)
- Pastor: Rev. David McCullough
- Elders: Mr. Osy Graham (Trinity RPC) & Mr. Ronnie Balfour (Newtownards RPC)
- Members: 14 Communicant, 6 Baptized
What’s in a Name?
The name of our church, “Woodstock” has nothing to do with music festivals or a comic strip character, it is simply the name of one of the south-eastern arterial routes out of Northern Ireland’s capital city, Belfast.
Woodstock is a church-replanting ministry of the Eastern Presbytery of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Ireland (RPCI), which has had a long history of gospel work in South East Belfast. The group is based in an old meeting house once home to a previous RP congregation that closed about fifteen years ago.
A Work Recommenced
Having kept ownership of the building and seeing the great need in our capital city, the Eastern Presbytery decided to restart work in this densely populated part of our city in 2012. After a year of meeting for midweek Bible study and regular street outreach, morning worship recommenced in April 2013 under the leadership of the late Rev. Knox Hyndman.
In early 2017, the Eastern Presbytery designated the growing group as a ‘Society’, establishing an Interim Session and organising a membership roll. The work is presently under the leadership of Rev. David McCullough (commissioned as the organising pastor in 2017) and two ruling elders Mr. Osy Graham (Trinity RPC) and Mr. Ronnie Balfour (Newtownards RPC).
Currently the church family comprises: 14 communicant members, 6 covenant children, and a further 14 adults and 3 children. This group contains people of all ages and backgrounds and a variety of nationalities – Northern Irish, Polish, Mongolian.
In an attempt to reach out to the nations around us with the Good News, we have used a variety of means: invitations to our morning and evening church services, English classes, door to door visitation, street reach, public meetings. Through these and other means we have had many opportunities to share the gospel. During the pandemic, many of these avenues have been put on hold forcing us to make use of online opportunities via our Facebook page.
We find that, as we get busy in trying to share the gospel, the Lord brings people, often with no direct connection to what we have been doing at all. We believe it is the Lord’s way of reminding us that He builds the church and that we are called to be faithful in reaching out no matter what. Our church building is right on a busy street with shops and offices all around so from time to time visitors appear simply because they noticed our sign.
Within walking distance of our church building are the homes of tens of thousands of people from all the nations of the earth. Street after street of terraced housing as far as the eye can see in every direction is our mission field.
A few years ago a man who had recently come to faith saw our publicity for a Tuesday evening Bible study and just walked in off the street and has since become a member, involved in every area of church life.
The work is slow and has the usual challenges and opportunities of church life. But the Lord Jesus is building His Church and we have been given the great privilege of being part of His team. We often think of the words of our Saviour, “the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few”.
Please Pray for Us
Please join us in this work by praying for us.
- Pray for the Lord’s blessing on our times of worship each Lord’s Day.
- Pray that the Lord would add in new individuals and families who can form part of the core of this growing group.
- Pray for Jonny, one of our members who has recently been taken under care of Presbytery and begun training for gospel ministry.
- Pray that we will have all the resources that we need to reach the lost all around for Jesus Christ.
Special thanks to Rev. David McCullough for compiling this information for the RP family around the world. If you want to see your congregation featured here, get in touch through our contact page. We’d love to hear from you!