On 26 September 2002, the Primate of the Church of Ireland and the President of the Methodist Church in Ireland signed a Covenant between these two churches. In the Covenant each church acknowledges the validity of the other, including its forms of worship and ordained ministers. It calls for the two churches "to share a common life and mission" and "to grow together so that unity may be visibly realised."
On 16 March 2003 the Church of St Andrew Glencairn in Belfast and Glencairn Methodist Church met together to celebrate the Covenant and to pledge ourselves to its aims. Now this was particularly easy for us to do, because we are already one church.
St Andrew’s Church – the Church on the Hill - was built in 1971 on the Forthriver Road in the middle of the new Glencairn housing estate. The Church inherited its name and communion vessels from the former church of St Andrew in Hope Street, Belfast. Many of the residents of that part of Belfast came to live in the new estate and to worship in the new church.
Right from the beginning it was a joint venture by the Church of Ireland and the Methodists. We are always a joint congregation and the ministers of each denomination take it in turn to lead worship. We developed an agreed "Ministry of the Word" for morning and evening prayer but we use either the Church of Ireland or the Methodist liturgy for the Sacraments depending on who is leading.
The church maintains an active Christian presence, witness and service in this area.
More information may be found at http://www.glencairn.connor.anglican.org
Rev Ken Houston (Auxiliary Minister in Glencairn)
Caption for the photographs
These banners hang in St Andrew’s Church