Two former rectors of St Patrick’s Parish Church, Broughshane, have been honoured with the dedication of an extension to the parish hall.
Two new rooms in the church hall have been named after the Ven Tom Stoney and the Ven Jim Rooney, who were both Archdeacons of Dalriada.
The Bishop of Connor, the Right Rev Alan Abernethy, officially opened and dedicated the extension following a Confirmation on Sunday March 8.
He was joined by the Mayor of Ballymena, Councillor Maurice Mills, the Church Wardens, members of the Select Vestry, representatives of the church organisations and parishioners.
Work on the £226,000 extension began in June 2008 and was completed earlier this year.
The Rector of St Patrick’s and Dean of Connor, the Very Rev John Bond said: “The new building will provide much needed additional facilities for our growing parish and community. It will consist of two large and one small meeting room, storage rooms, lift and toilet with provision for those with disabilities.
“The Select Vestry has invested a tremendous amount of time and thought in this project and has shown enormous faith, courage and determination. We thank God for his blessings, and our congregation for helping to provide these new and beautiful premises. We are passing on to the next generation – the young and young at heart – a building, which we pray will enrich and enhance the life of the parish and community.”
The Dean went on: “This extension has not been added to be idolised but to be utilised to the Glory of God, and may all who enter its doors find their needs met, whether spiritual, recreational or just simple relaxation. This new facility to our fine parish hall will, I pray, enable us to engage more fully as a Church for witness in the 21st Century. We must be a Church living our faith in action – a Church with open doors and a warm welcome, offering care and love in the community and to encourage that community spirit which is so characteristic of Broughshane.
“We look forward to the future with renewed faith, clearer vision and profound thankfulness to God who makes all things possible.”
Dean Bond paid tribute to all who were involved in the project, including the builder George Robinson and architect Uel Marcus.
He added: “It has been a privilege to be a part of God’s plan in this parish in these early years of the 21st century.”
Report courtesy of Joe Boyd, Ballymena Times