Advent Gift Day
We want to give thanks to God for all His mercies towards us in this challenging year and as an act of thanksgiving we want to be generous people with our time, prayers and finances.
Bishop David asked every parish in the diocese to hold a Gift Day to support those in need in the midst of the pandemic. Our gift day happened on Sunday 13 December; 80% of what was given supports the local mission of the church, 10% of what was raised will go to support our link Diocese of Maridi’s COVID–19 relief and recovery fund and a further 10% will go towards the Down and Dromore Diocesan Church Planting Fund. Continue reading to find out more about where our gifts are going.
80% to the Local Mission of the Church
80% of what was given will go towards supporting local people in Bangor through various mission outreach initiatives through our church. These include We are With You, Compassion, Alpha, mission outreach in schools through recorded assemblies and more. We have outlined some of what we are continuing to seek to do in the local community below.
When the pandemic began, as a church we felt that God was calling us out and into our community. We want to continue to tell our Parish ‘We are With You’ and share that Jesus Christ is the light in the darkness. This advent season, we are planning on going back out to the 4,000 homes in our parish to bless them with a gift of hope (a copy of John’s gospel and a card).
Our Compassion ministry has been back open for the last 12 weeks and the team have really seen the Lord at work! We want to continue to provide hope and dignity to every person and family that comes through the doors. Since we reopened, over 80 people have been supported through the provision of good quality clothing and 20 households have been supported in our 6 week food programme in conjunction with Storehouse North Down. In delivering the food hampers we have also had the privilege to pray with people on their doorsteps.
Our tech team has worked tirelessly to ensure that everyone in our church family has the opportunity to join with us each Sunday to worship God, whether on-site or online. We have also realised that there is huge missional potential in live streaming our services; when we meet people who don’t go to church we can invite them to watch online in the comfort of their own home while hearing about the hope there is in Jesus! Therefore, we have made the decision to invest in permanent equipment for live streaming to further facilitate reaching people for the gospel right where they are.
10% to Maridi Diocese
The Diocese of Down and Dromore have been partnered with our sister Diocese of Maridi in South Sudan since 1999. After 20 years of hardship and civil war there has been fragile peace since 2018 but now there is Coronavirus to deal with on top of hunger, rising prices and the displacement of millions of people. Together let’s thank the Lord for the determination and resilience of our brothers and sisters in Maridi as they continue to make every effort to respond to the hardship around them through sharing the gospel and meeting practical needs out of their own minimal resources. Donations from the gift day will go to support the Diocese of Maridi’s COVID–19 relief and recovery fund through CMSI.
Recent giving from within Down and Dromore (2020) was spent on:
- Financial support for Pastor/Evangelists churches were not able to meet due to Covid–19, no offerings means no stipends.
- Provision of seeds for planting, oil for cooking, food to eat, soap for hygiene
- and protection.
- Purchase of 20 bicycles for Evangelists to carry them and their message
- (Gospel and Covid–19 awareness) into more remote communities.
- The building of an extension to the Bethsaida clinic currently being used during this rainy season as a shelter for those waiting for treatment. Support for ministry students stranded in Uganda following closure of borders during lockdown.
10% to Down and Dromore Church Planting Fund
Church planting is not a new phenomenon. It goes right back to the New Testament. Indeed, the Church of Ireland in every generation has planted new churches!
The church planting fund was launched at Bible Week 2013 and six new churches have been planted to date, (including Moneyreagh, Braniel, Glen Estate in Newtownards, Killicomaine in Portadown), and many diocesan evangelists trained, including our own Jonny Tate. New churches are strategically planted where there is spiritual poverty and perhaps little opportunity to hear the life-transforming good news of God’s generosity.
How to Give
There is still time to give to the Gift Day Appeal:
1. Bank Transfer:
Bank: Danske Bank
Sort Code: 95-02-52 Account No: 81003445
Account Name: Bangor Parish Church (General Account)
Reference: ‘Gift Day’/Your Name
Please consider filling out a gift aid declaration if you haven’t already done so, and post it or deliver it to our church post box. The form and our postal address are available at the bottom of this page.
If you cannot give online, donations by cheque can still be given by post, hand delivered to the post box outside the door to the Church Office or given in labelled ‘Gift Day’ envelopes at one of our services. Cheques can be made payable to Bangor Parish Church. If you have a printer please include the Advent Gift Day Form and Gift Aid Declaration in your envelope with your gift (these forms are available below along with our postal address). For safety reasons please do send cash via post or leave money in the post box.
If you are a UK Taxpayer, please consider filling out a Gift Aid Declaration Form, which allows us to claim an additional 25% on what you give. To fill in a form please click the ‘Gift Aid Declaration’ button below to print the document. Once completed please return your form either in your envelope with your gift on Sunday 29. If you are giving online or via post please send it to the address below.
Gift Aid forms and postal donations can be sent to Bangor Parish Church, 1 Castle Street, Bangor BT20 4SU or alternatively you can place your form or gift in the post box outside the door to the Church Office.