Service marks official opening of new church building

Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly) and Mrs Claire Sellar pictured with Bishop Ken Clarke at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 21. Pics by John Kelly
Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly) and Mrs Claire Sellar pictured with Bishop Ken Clarke at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 21. Pics by John Kelly

Moira Presbyterian Church’s new building was officially opened and dedicated last week.

The service was led by the minister, the Rev Howard Gilpin, who gave the call to worship and welcomed the congregation and guests who included Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP and the Rev Dr Frank Sellar, Moderator of the General Assembly.

The new Moira Presbyterian Church building was officially opened and dedicated by the Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar, Moderator of the General Assembly.

The new Moira Presbyterian Church building was officially opened and dedicated by the Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar, Moderator of the General Assembly.

Mrs Gertrude Jamison presided at the organ and together with the church choir and praise group, led the congregational hymns.

Rev Gilpin, who has served as minister of the congregation since 2001, said: “The new church building is wonderful and features very modern facilities such as a coffee bar, crèche, dedicated meeting room and other offices.

“Over 500 people attended the opening and dedication service, and the response to the new building has been very positive and encouraging.

“The old church building was inadequate for the needs of the congregation and the new premises will serve us well as we look to the future.

Rev David Bruce (Acting Moderator of Dromore Presbytery), Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly), Rev Howard Gilpin and the Rt Hon Sir Jeffrey Donaldson (Lagan Valley MP) pictured at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 21. Pics by John Kelly

Rev David Bruce (Acting Moderator of Dromore Presbytery), Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly), Rev Howard Gilpin and the Rt Hon Sir Jeffrey Donaldson (Lagan Valley MP) pictured at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 21. Pics by John Kelly

“In historical terms this is one of the older congregations of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, dating back to the late 17th Century.

“The new church is the fifth meeting house in the history of the congregation; the previous one had been built in 1829.”

In his address, Rev Dr Frank Sellar said: “While it’s a marvellous achievement to construct a new building, it’s even more vital to live faithful, vibrant Christ-like lives”.

Meanwhile, Ulster Unionist Councillor Alexander Redpath has welcomed the official opening of the church’s impressive new building as “a significant investment in the local community.”

Mrs Gertrude Jamison (organist) and the church praise group and choir pictured leading the singing of the closing hymn, In Christ alone.

Mrs Gertrude Jamison (organist) and the church praise group and choir pictured leading the singing of the closing hymn, In Christ alone.

Congratulating Rev Howard Gilpin and the congregation of Moira Presbyterian Church on the successful development project, Cllr Redpath said: “I had a wonderful night at the opening of the new church building for Moira Presbyterian. I would like to congratulate the Minister, Kirk Session and Church Committee for all their hard work and leadership delivering this project. The work involved delivering a new church building project cannot be overestimated. This new building represents a significant investment in our community which will be used and enjoyed by hundreds of people.”

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Trevor Reaney and and Rodney Quigg busy on car park duties at Moira Presbyterian.

Trevor Reaney and and Rodney Quigg busy on car park duties at Moira Presbyterian.

Cllr Alexander Redpath, Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly) and Mrs Claire Sellar at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church.

Cllr Alexander Redpath, Rt Rev Dr Frank Sellar (Moderator of the General Assembly) and Mrs Claire Sellar at the opening and dedication of Moira Presbyterian Church.