The annual service of thanksgiving for the work and witness of the Leprosy Mission Northern Ireland was held in Lisburn Cathedral on Sunday January 28.
The Rev Canon Sam Wright, Rector of Lisburn Cathedral, conducted the service and the preacher was Mr Colin Ferguson, National Director of The Leprosy Mission, Northern Ireland.
Mr Mark Noble, a member of Council read the first Scripture reading from 1 Chronicles 16 and Dr Margaret Wallace, also a member of Council, read the second Scripture reading from St John 21. Mr Sam Smith, a member of the Leprosy Mission staff, led the prayers of Intercession.
Preaching from John Chapter 21, Colin Ferguson spoke of the meal Jesus prepared for his disciples after they had toiled all night without catching anything. He said: “It was as they obeyed his instruction to try again on the other side of the boat that they experienced his wonderful provision. The Leprosy Mission has been labouring throughout the world for over 133 years. Much has been achieved, but there is still a great deal of work ahead of us.
“We need to re-commit ourselves to the task until it is finished, and we make that commitment in the knowledge that if we are faithful to our calling, then we will never lack his power and his resources to get the job done.
“Whilst we live in a world where every minute another person is diagnosed with the curable disease of leprosy then there is much work for His Leprosy Mission to be involved in. The fact that leprosy can easily be cured with modern medicines only highlights the tragedy that many sufferers are still unwilling to come forward for treatment.”
Andrew Skelly on organ and the Cathedral Choir led the praise. The anthem was ‘The Lord’s My Shepherd’ and the hymns were: ‘When morning gilds the skies’, ‘Safe in the shadow of the Lord’, ‘Jesu, Jesu’, ‘Fill us with your love’ and ‘Lord, you give the great commission’.
During the service, an offering was taken to support the ‘twin’ Anandaban Leprosy Hospital Nepal.