13 December 2017

News at home & abroad

Celebrating 10 Years of Establishing People in God’s Word

In April Precept Ministries NI celebrated 10 years of ministry during a special anniversary dinner of thanksgiving at The Mount Conference Centre, Belfast.

Precept NI is part of a larger international and interdenominational organisation which was founded in 1970 by Jack and Kay Arthur, USA. The organisation seeks to establish people in God’s Word through Inductive Bible Study methods. Precept now reaches across 150 countries in 70 languages enabling people to access the Bible and encounter God through personal study of His word. The Northern Ireland office based in Carryduff, Belfast has established its ministry across the six counties in Northern Ireland with recent expansion into counties Donegal and Dublin. Since running its initial workshop in 2002, Precept NI has now reached almost 10,000 people through Bible study, with 100 active trained leaders teaching over 1000 students each month. There is a great sense of anticipation as the vision to expand the ministry into the South of Ireland has already made significant advances with classes now running in Donegal, Dublin and Carlow and also a forthcoming 1-day workshop planned in Rossnowlagh in September.

Precept NI is committed to the organisation’s vision especially given that only 10% of people in church regularly engage with the Bible. Inductive Bible Study methods equip people with skills and tools to discover truth for themselves which in turn transforms the church as people come to know God through His word, accessing His truths and promises and applying them in their lives.

Precept Ministries provide resources for all levels of study, whether in a personal or group setting and dependent upon time available and desired depth of study. The full range of resources is available to view online at www.preceptni.co.uk or alternatively at the offices in Carryduff. Taster workshops are available for general studies and also for men, women, youth and children’s studies.

For the first time Precept NI will be running its own training institute ‘Roots’ from 21st – 23rd May when training will be offered in 2 strands: introduction to inductive Bible study methods and also an equipping strand for those pursuing leadership roles.

‘Engage’ women’s Bible study will run from September 2012 to May 2013 and will offer short studies on the books of Joseph, Ruth, Hosea and Esther. Further information is available online, by contacting the office or visiting the Precept stand at Focusfest from 8th – 9th June.

“let me know Your ways that I may know You” Exodus 33:13 

Cyril Johnston Complex, 135 Ballynahinch Road, Carryduff, Belfast BT8 8DJ www.preceptni.co.uk E: info@preceptni.co.uk T: 028 9081 4880 Office Hours: Monday – Friday 9am to 4pm

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Billy Graham and the definition of Marriage

The Rev. Billy Graham took a rare step into politics to voice his support for an amendment that would define marriage as between a man and a woman. He urged voters in his native North Carolina to approve the state’s proposed marriage amendment with a terse comment which was ran as full-page ads in fourteen of the state’s newspapers. The statement read, “At age 93, I never thought we would have to debate the definition of marriage. The Bible is clear – God’s definition of marriage is between a man and a woman.”

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Open Doors Provides Support for Syrian Christians

Despite the ceasefire agreed by UN negotiators, the situation in Homs is miserable and the outlook for Christians remains desperate. Ninety per cent of Christians have fled the city to Damascus and the surrounding villages, although a few pastors have stayed on and continue to hold services.

Reports are being received that Christians in Syria are being threatened just for being Christians. One Christian said, “The last months there has been some violence against Christians, apparently targeting them because of their religion. We heard of flyers being distributed, saying that Christians should participate in the protests or later ‘pay the price.’”

Many believers are finding strength in their faith. They try to keep their attitude positive and trust that God has an answer and will bring peace again. “The church is praying non-stop,” commented one of the pastors in the capital. “What will happen next? Only God knows the answer, but the church is definitely standing in the gap, praying.”

Christians wonder what will happen if a new government comes to power. Echoing the questions on many people’s lips one Christian asked, “In Iraq hundreds of thousands of Christians left that country due to all the violence targeting them. But where will a Syrian exodus lead to? Which country will welcome hundreds of thousands of Christian refugees?”

Open Doors and its partners are working on the ground over the next three months to provide emergency relief to desperate families who have fled their homes. Relief packs, trauma counselling and other provisions, including a family Bible, are being distributed through local church networks based in Damascus, Aleppo and other centers.

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Keswick Ministries appoint New Chairman

Jonathan Risbridger has been appointed the new chairman of Keswick Ministries.

Risbridger who is minister and team leader of Above Bar church in Southampton, succeeds Jonathan Lamb, of Langham Partnership International.

Mr Risbridger said it was an “exciting privilege” to be involved in the work of Keswick and praised the “significant” contribution the ministry had made to the life and mission of the UK church over the decades.

He said, “Our focus, however, is not on the past but on our vision for the future which is to seek the renewal of the church for its mission in today’s world, confident in the power and relevance of the scriptures and dependent on the transforming presence of the Holy Spirit.”

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Spirit Radio Celebrates 18 Months On-Air With Launch of 549 AM

“It has been a wonderful 18 months, the Lord has opened the doors and carried us through the launch of Christian Radio in 5 cities and now we have the opportunity to extend our broadcast reach on 549AM,” explains CEO Rob Clarke.

Spirit Radio has built an impressive listenership in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford. According to surveys carried out by independent companies RED C and ASKCHILI, Spirit Radio now has 165,000 listeners tuning in on a weekly basis.

The feedback has been overwhelmingly upbeat. In the context of the economic difficulties and enormous social upheaval, listeners have been quick to applaud the uplifting music and practical current affairs content. More than that Spirit Radio is reaching out to people in homes, cars and offices with a message  of hope. Here’s how one listener responded…

“I was very devoted as a child… I am looking for a way to find my way back to Jesus… I would like to start reading the bible… Can you help with some suggestions on where to start? It’s been over 20 years. I am extremely thankful for your  tation…”

World boxing champion Katie Taylor, helped launch Spirit and is a real fan of the station. Preparing now for the Olympics Katie enthused about Spirit noting, “For me, success is attained when I fix my eyes on Jesus, Spirit Radio is a great resource that reminds me daily to do this.”

Spirit Radio is broadcasting on FM in Dublin at 89.9, Limerick 89.8, Cork 90.9, Galway 91.7 and Waterford 90.1. Tune into Spirit on AM at 549. The reach of this broadcast is extensive and while it seeks to primarily serve the Irish population the signal has been picked up in England, Scotland, France and beyond.