ABOUT US: STORIES OF HOPE

 

As a church family, we have much to learn from each other. This page contains some stories of people connected with Abbots Cross Church who are believers and followers of Jesus, and who are learning day by day what it means to live for Him.

 

Stephen McIlwaine

In January 2016, Stephen McIlwaine shared his 'Story' as part of the Humans of PCI Series, that is being featured on the PCI Young Adults Facebook Page...check out this story below...

My journey started when my parents decided to board me and my siblings on a plane to Southern Africa, where I lived there for 10 years. Being Irish, a lot of factor 30 was used! It was a great childhood and I learnt so much from experiencing a very different culture. I moved back to Northern Ireland to finish school before studying at Jordanstown. Uni was a challenging but vital growing experience. Looking back, this is where I start to see God placing fantastic people around me and paving the way forward in those early steps of my Christian journey.

Post uni I slowly moved towards full time employment in the charity and voluntary sector, often being the only Christian in the work place. At times it was challenging, yet God moulded and shaped me to be more bold, have a voice for Him, mature in faith and get out of my comfort zone. This developed a real heart to serve on my front line and go beyond the Church pews on a Sunday. At the time there was a great family and youth worker in my Church who was and still is a great encouragement to me. He is an example of a disciple who invested time in me and encouraged me to follow where God was guiding me.

Soon after I got involved as a volunteer in The Dock & I now work there full time. It is a cafe church and draws the most diverse mix of people you can imagine. I have a real heart for people and this was the perfect opportunity to meet and journey with people you may not expect to find in church. This opened my eyes big time, humbled me and continues to teach me so much about how God is moving here in Belfast; how dark it can be at times, but realising that this is an exciting time to serve our creator! It's taught me to drop masks, that there is hope and to rely fully on Jesus. Beautiful things begin to crumble when we give into self and try to go on in our own strength. Through the Dock I guess I've had a chance to evangelise, be an encourager to other believers and learn from great Christian people with vision for the Church.

God has continued to grow my heart for working and more recently I have taken on more leadership roles within my church. Together with a few friends, we felt a calling to create something for young adults. It has been a real encouragement to grow deeper in our faith with other Christians our own age and learn from others a few steps ahead - we could not have done it without them! God has moved me where he wants, placed people around me and is shaping me to do His work.

I pray that looking back you too can see Gods hand in your life and learn from those God has placed around you. If you feel led by God to do something, with support and guidance around you, go for it! Don't let it become just a chat over a coffee.

Hopes and prayers for Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church...

As part of the special Thanksgiving Service to mark the opening of the refurbished building of Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church on Easter Saturday 4th April 2015, we asked a number of people from across the generations in Abbots Cross to share their hopes and prayers for the church family in the months and years ahead...check out the video above to hear what they shared...

 

"...you are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God's temple...and you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple..."  (1 Peter 2:4-5)


For more information about the church family of Abbots Cross, feel free to get in touch with us. You can email us: info@acpc.co.uk or phone us: 028 9085 2120.

Meet some of the folks who are part of Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church...

As part of the Easter Sunday morning service on 20th April 2014, at Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church, we set aside some time for people to share how the risen Lord Jesus is transforming their lives, day by day...and we did this through the use of cardboard testimonies, where on one side of cardboard people summarised their lives before meeting Christ, and on the other side, the difference He is now making in their lives...

Take five minutes and watch the video...it is incredible to see folks of all ages and backgrounds sharing their love for Jesus as they live for Him one day at a time...

"...this, the power of the cross:
Christ became sin for us.
Took the blame, bore the wrath - 
we stand forgiven at the cross."

"...anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life has gone; a new life has begun!" (2 Corinthians 5:17)

For more information about the church family of Abbots Cross, feel free to get in touch with us. You can email us: info@acpc.co.uk or phone us: 028 9085 2120.

What being a Christian means to some of the folks in ACPC

In March 2014 we posed a couple of questions to some of the folks who belong to Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church (ACPC), about what it means being a Christian and being part of a church family. Here's what they said...

If you have any questions about what it means to follow Jesus, or what is involved in becoming a part of Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church, or if you need a hand with anything in your day to day life, get in touch with us...that's why we're here.  We look forward to speaking with you soon...

Cathy Smyth

Hi everyone! I'm Cathy Smyth! I'm 24, live with my parents in Greenisland, and work in part of our family furniture business. I enjoy diet coke, The West Wing and sitting talking to my friends for hours on end!  I was first introduced to Abbots Cross, in fact any experience of church, when I was 14 and became friends with Lisa. It was clear that Lisa was heavily involved in many organisations in church and soon invited me along to Youth Club and N.D.K (more recently known as ROC). I didn't know back then, but its amazing the lasting effect chatting at the back of maths class would have on my future! 


Although I regularly attended these groups and loved my new friends, I was also listening and learning about God as the weeks and months progressed. I was never a bad person. Up to now I was an average teenager. I didn't swear, kept good company, my room was always messy (although that's still be case - sorry mum!) but I soon realised that all of things were not enough and there's more to life than just being good. 

I realised that Jesus, the Son of God, was sent to earth for a reason. He came so He could make a way for us, imperfect sinful people, to be free, to have a personal relationship with God and most importantly secure a place in heaven, where we can rejoice with God forever. A Youth Club "Time Out" led by Raymond McKnight in February 2003 explained this, and if I wanted to be part of God's family what I needed to pray. I prayed with my Uncle Robert, who is a minister, that next week and gave my life to God, apologised for my sin and asked him to lead and guide me the rest of my life.

Since then, I have been an active member at Abbots Cross along with my mum Clara who came to faith a few years after I joined. I feel very blessed by the fellowship and friendships I share with the people at my church. Everybody is very welcoming and caring and I know first hand how their prayerful support has helped me and my family. Abbots Cross has many organisations for all ages and interests and I'm fortunate to be part of a home fellowship group, and a leader for Youth Club, ROC, Take Five and our new 20's/30's organisation "Engage". Having my best friend Lisa as a strong Christian influence and my many other Christian friends at church and elsewhere have been a major encouragement to me growing up as a Christian, particularly through out my teenage years and now into my 20's.

I still make mistakes, I'm a work-in-progress and still not sure how my wee life is going to pan out . But I know that staying close to God by spending time reading His word, praying and being a regular part of Abbots Cross fellowship, God will continue to guide me and show me the exciting plans he has for my life. 

Hebrews 10:23 - "let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profress, for He who promised is faithful". 

 

Sunday services

Morning - 11am

Evening - 6.30pm

 

Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church

91 Doagh Road

Newtownabbey

Northern Ireland

BT37 9QN

 

Tel: 028 9085 2120

Email:  info@acpc.co.uk

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