Archive | November, 2007

Download Freemasonary Uncovered

26 Nov

Click on the link to download the public meeting Freemasonary Uncovered.
Speaker Rev.David McCullough.
Venue Dromore RP Church.
Enjoy.

Freemasonary Uncovered

Advertisements

Christian Celebrities

13 Nov

The other day I was struck by a great idea, an idea that may be the answer to the increasing secularisation and dropping church attendences. We live in the era of celebrity, infact you can’t turn your television on without being bombarded by B-list celebrities dancing, cooking or just doing nothing in the name of reality television. Surely the church needs to tap into this present fashion. What the church needs is to no longer ignore such oppertunities but to be more open-minded and embrace them. What better way to get people interested in church than inviting along a christian celebrity? And surely if we were but to point out to the world how many christian celebrities there are people would want to copy them and soon we’d have a full-blown revival on our hands! Afterall who’s really interested in the prescence of God when you can have the prescence of a celebrity at your church?

STOP

By this stage of the article I hope you’re begining to think I’ve lost the plot. Sadly what i’ve written in the section above is seems to be the viewpoint of some christians today. And even if your church isn’t on the tour of any christian celebrity at the moment doesn’t mean its a problem you can ignore. Often in our evangelistic literature or even our witnessing we can try to persuade on the basis that some well-known figure, past or present, shares our faith. There is further danger in glorifying a christian megastar who openly disobeys the 4th commandment. By raising them as an example we are saying that you can opt out of obeying God’s law and place a stumbling block in the way of others.

I’m not saying that famous people who are christians should hide their faith, generally they are not the ones at fault, it is other christians placing them on a pedestool. Neither am I saying that churches to which a celebrity belongs should not use tham at all. If Stuart Elliot (Northern Ireland footballer) or Linvoy Primus (Portsmouth FC) were to become a member of Dromore RPC I’m sure when we run our football Holiday Bible Club during the summer we would advertise that he would be helping coaching but to run a special meeting “Come hear [insert celeb] talk about their faith” surely is lowering Christianity to a level of a celebrity-endorsed perfume! Christians are called to use their gifts, not their image. Whilst many seem to think having a celebrity speak at a church meeting is a great idea, in reality what we need at our churches is not the prescence of Jason Robinson, Jonathan Edwards (triple jumper would usually be of preference to anything that was said by the great American preacher) or Andrew Trimble but the prescence of God in our midst. The Holy Spirit changes people’s lives, not famous christians.


Celebrity Jonathan Edwards vs The Real Jonathan Edwards

Other News

Sorry this is the first post in a rather long time. Life’s been rather hectic of late and I’ve had to juggle essays with international football (watching not playing). Posting should be more regular in the future.

Rumour has it that the report of the EP weekend written for DMFWS by moi may appear in the messenger in the near future. The more funny bits however had to be censored.

And finally, Oxo have announced plans to introduced a new cube inspired by the England football team. It’s white with a red cross on it, they are calling it “The Laughing Stock”.

How to be a Completely Ineffective Church Member (Part 4)

8 Nov
Avoid Unity At All Costs

To make sure that your descent into ineffective church membership is not a lonely affair you will need to establish an inner sanctum to your ICYS (Ineffective Covenanting Youth Society). These select groupings in the church have through the years come under several guises: The Hole Pickers or The M&Gs (Mumblers & Grumblers). One of these clubs will aid greatly in the demise of your whole congregation. The main point of these select groupings is to stir up disunity in the church.

To really hamstring the effectiveness of the witness of the church it is important to bear in mind that avoiding unity at all costs has several levels that you must become proficient in.
Let me deal firstly with the local church. This will be your training ground for a wider scale assault on unity. When someone apologises for something that they said or did tell them that it doesn’t matter. Then file it away in the deepest recesses of your hard drive, but make sure you have a desk top icon on the surface of your mind so that every time you see them or hear their name those words that they said in haste and asked forgiveness for come flashing across the screen of your mind. Grudge bearing will soon have the pulses of ineffectiveness spreading through the church faster than the Covenanter Grapevine can report Rev. Jolly has been called to First Ballygobackwards. Oh and by the way use that Grapevine to good effect. Stash your juicy comments about others in the guise of prayer points, “isn’t it too bad about…..”

You must try and devise ways of remembering people that zoom in on their bad points the way the camera does in a zit cream advertisement. Learn to see the speck in your brother’s eye even when there is a whopping great plank in your own. Alongside of this, categorising people is a useful tool. Tar all members of the one family with the same brush and make sure that someone’s faux pas doesn’t disappear with the passing of time. “He’s not reliable….do you remember the time…” are excellent thoughts to keep afloat in your mind.

Disunity will be greatly advanced when you dig your heels in on every decision of church life that clashes with your personal preference. Say loudly and widely, “Nobody ever gets a say round here,” when what you really mean is, “I don’t get my way round here.” You must grumble about every decision that the elders make and quietly leave little incendiary devices in the minds of others to detonate in the next church gathering. Never ever, ever say, “Well I am happy to follow the lead of the elders in this matter.”

Remember the simplest things can be agar plates for stimulating the bacteria of disunity: what colour to paint the church hall, the change in the time of church activities, changing the name of the church to something less off putting, who sits where.

When you have got local scale disunity well sussed and the “fellow ship” is listing, then you are ready for your first mission on a grander scale. Only go to other RP churches where you are happy with every jot and tittle of church life. Do a survey and cross out congregations from your holiday visits as you see fit. Bible versions, Psalter used and dress codes are ideal categories for your list of “to visit or not to visit.” When you have got your “hit list” completed be sure to share your ideas with others. As this mentality spreads little pockets of “Real R.P.s,” “Out on our Own R.P.s” and “Anything Goes R.P.s” will develop. By this stage the downfall is imminent and ineffectiveness has won the day.


With the local church and denomination in the bag your ineffectiveness campaign is ready for one final frontier, the Wider Christian Church. You have got to realise here that only Psalm singers are bound for the “Pearly Gates.” Anyone that might have a different opinion from you about worship, church government or baptism is to be viewed as second class and to be pitied. The last thing you want is for some non-Christian to think that you Christians love each other. Follow that approach and the next thing you will have on your hands is some new convert, and they are the hardest of all to get on the ineffectiveness bandwagon.

One final hint about unity, but you’ll have to be really clever for this. There’s a unity that you must make every effort to see developed in your church and life, namely that unity that abandons the Bible and accepts every opinion and idea as of equal validity. Embrace everyone as a Christian who says they are Christian, no matter what they think about justification by faith alone. Lambaste far and wide every Christian minister who refuses to share a platform with all religious leaders. “Narrow-minded bigot” is a good inflammatory name to use for such ministers. And if some of the ordinary members of your congregation have had a hard time for not going to some interfaith service make sure you add your tuppence worth of, “in this day and age we need to be much more broad minded.”

Remember avoid Biblical unity at all cost.

Bible Bit to Avoid Ephesians 4:1-6

Rev.David McCullough

Eastern Presbytery Weekend 2007

1 Nov
Carlsberg don’t do Eastern Presbytery Weekends but even if they did they couldn’t have beaten this one. For me the Eastern Presbytery Weekend is always one of the highlights of the year and this year was probably the best yet. The weekend ran on the traditional format, wisely not changing a winning formula, possibly a lesson for Nigel Worthington or maybe the IFA should have appointed Peter Loughridge as manager after Lawrie’s departure!
Anyway leaving serious Nige-bashing safely in the hands of AWS, the speaker for the weekend was the recent RP signing of Rev.Andrew Kerr of Knockbraken RPC. Gareth Kerr (no relation) intensified the pressure on Rev.Kerr’s shoulders by pointing out this was Andrew’s debut at an RP young people’s event but he stepped up to the plate and delivered a quality weekend’s worth of talks on the topic “The Christian Anatomy”. Lessons were drawn from various body parts mentioned in Scripture and reminded us of the illustrations God has given us showing his care for us and how we are to serve him. His use of powerpoint however was described as being a little too “Presbyterian” by a member of Lisburn.


Tom pondering on the talks

Friday night’s games were organised by Carrick CY. The highlight of which had to be my introduction to “Whoosh ball” a game set to take the world by storm. Rumours abound that it may even become part of the London 2012 Olympics. Sleep came in the early hours of Saturday morning after much “bant” and a tube of Jaffacakes. Saturday afternoon’s activities consisted of football in Kilraughts car park and some girls stuff, henceforth abbreviated to “guff”, in the church hall. No pictures of football are available as no-one with a camera ventured outside into the sub-zero condtions.

Uni-hoc

More of the women’s game

Volleyball- Tom in action

On Saturday evening Lorna and Ali organised the activity. A game called Conclusions in which we had to act out the final scene of a well-known movie in groups. Absolutely hilarious though the judges did have a bit of a ‘mare in their scoring of the acting. How could anything have beaten Ice Age in which Rob admitted he’s ginger, Champion the Wonderhorse saved the day and Gregg (our hero) Somerville had a starring role as a mammoth? Rumour has it there are video of some of the acts which I’ll try to get my hands on.

The new and improved Napolen Dynamite

On Sabbath we return to Kilraughts for worship during which Ali was left very confused by DF’s children’s address and afterwards we enjoyed a great lunch thanks to the ladies of Kilraughts. Also saw Debbie P for the first time since the legendary Cloughmills Go Team. There were only two flaws in the whole weekend which meant it wasn’t quite perfect. Firstly Tom “the Muppet” Sommerville managed to forget the clocks went back and woke our room at 7:15! What an eejit! I only realised after having got up and showered! Also I’m sorry to say that salad was offered as an option on Saturday for lunch. Don’t make friends with salad!



Some extra pics

Bex, Claire and the self-confessed Ginger

Calvin taking a photo of his own shoulder


The party bus!

Aaron, Abi, Tom, Harry and Ali

Rufus and Elvis

Sunday 7:15am not 8:15 Tom!