The rector of St Paul’s Lisburn the Rev Canon Jim Carson was a speaker at a conference for Diocesan Lay Readers held in Arusha, Tanzania, in September.
Jim was invited by Bishop Gaddiel Lenini, Bishop of Kajiado Diocese in Kenya, and his visit was facilitated by CMS Ireland.
Jim led a two hour session on the first morning for the Lay Readers, giving an overview of the Bible beginning with the Old Testament through to the New Testament and the coming of Jesus. He then led a second session with the senior diocesan clergy who had accompanied the Lay Readers to Tanzania.
“The purpose of the conference was for the Lay Readers in particular to receive encouragement and confidence in their roles,” Jim said. “It was also about relationships, their own relationships with each other, and many had been touched by teams from the Church of Ireland in times past and these relationships were well remembered and cherished.”
The conference was part of a two week trip during which Jim also visited Imberikani where St Paul’s, Lisburn, facilitated the building of a new church which is also part of a new diocesan centre in that area.
“There was also the opportunity to visit Archdeaconry of Magadi which is in the Rift Valley,” Jim said. “This is a very hot area were Tata produce Soda Ash in a large factory close to Lake Magadi which is at sea-level.”
Jim and the Bishop travelled on to Entasopia, a further 42km, were they stayed overnight. “This is a beautiful area up from the lake, green, with plenty of water where there are several game lodges, an area the diocese wishes to develop in the future,” Jim explained.
“This again was a worthwhile visit further developing partnership between Ireland and the church in Kenya, meeting and speaking to clergy and people, and helping to equipping local Christians in mission,” he added.