About an hour ago the Presbyterian Church in Ireland convened their 2015 General Assembly with worship and the installation of the new Moderator, the Rev. Dr. Ian McNie. The Assembly runs through Thursday 4 June. As the meeting gets going here is some info to help follow along:
- The Assembly will be live streamed from the live streaming page. Note that links I have seen in tweets have gone to the main assembly page instead.
- The theme for the Assembly is “A Caring Fellowship” and among other places, it will be highlighted in the worship on Wednesday evening.
- The business of the Assembly can be found on the Reports page and there is also a page with the full Order of Business.
- The polity documents include the main document, The Code, as well as the helpful A Guide to Assembly Procedure.
- The News page will carry official press releases and news items including the pre-Assembly press release which contains a rundown of the major moments and business at the Assembly this year. For a bit more lighthearted look at the Assembly you can also check out their 10 things you didn’t know about #PCIGA15.
There are plenty of social media contact points for the Assembly, beginning with the official Twitter account @PCIAssembly which in the past has provided a very helpful and comprehensive news feed on the actions of the Assembly. The outgoing Moderator, Rev. Dr. Michael Barry, has been tweeting at @PCIModerator. We will see if the new Moderator, the Rev. Dr. Ian McNie, assumes the account. The official hashtag for the Assembly is #pciga15 as you might have guessed from that news article above. There is a hashtag from last year, #lifeinpci for dialogue and sharing about the life and work of the church and it seems to be getting a bit of activity this year too.
Other ministries of the church that have Twitter accounts are the Life in PCI (@lifeinpci), Presbyterian Women (@PWinIreland), Mission Ireland (@MissionIreland) and PCI Global Missions (@PCIOverseas).
The other set of social media contacts to keep an eye on are those related to the Youth Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. They can be followed at a couple of different Twitter handles including the Youth Assembly account for PCI SPUD (@pcispud), and the Youth and Children’s Ministry account @PCIYAC. Last year they hosted a successful Fringe Event and I am looking to see if something similar might be happening again this year at Assembly. Watch their Facebook page for updates and to see what the youth are up to.
In the list of others to watch for interesting and useful updates it must start with Alan in Belfast (@alaninbelfast) who is always prolific (in a good sense) and insightful during the Assembly. For those active in leadership in the church I would point to former Moderator Rob Craig (@RobCraig54) and Cheryl Meban (@cherylmeban) convener of the Board of Mission Overseas. Looking at the activity so far it appears that we will get the view from the tech booth from Jonathan Tweedie (@jonnytweedie). A trio of others that are active early include Christina Baillie (@cjanebaillie), James Currie (@JCBelfast) and David McCullagh (@wdsmccullagh), although the last may be remote like myself. I will update if I see others that are helpful to follow.
Much of the business for this Assembly will include administrative work related to the reorganization begun at last year’s Assembly. In addition, some work needs to be done to register with the Charities Commission for Northern Ireland and Charities Regulatory Authority in the Republic of Ireland. And I am sure we will see reaction and discussion related to the Republic of Ireland’s recent same-sex marriage referendum and the movement in a similar direction by the Church of Scotland.
So our prayers are with the Assembly this week and Moderator McNie. Best wishes in your discussions and discernment.