Aghavea's New Rector
Aghavea's New Rector

The new Rector of Aghavea is quickly settling into life in Fermanagh. The Reverend Gary McMurray began his new ministry at Aghavea at the start of September, fresh from a Curacy in St Elizabeth’s Dundonald. Moving from the edge of east Belfast to the village of Brookeborough has been a big change, but he’s getting used to life in rural Fermanagh. “I’ve managed to get lost while on pastoral visits a few times. Rather than the Lost Sheep, it’s the Lost Rector!”

Gary was Curate in St Elizabeth’s for three years, having previously studied at the Church of Ireland Theological College and Trinity College in Dublin. “St Elizabeth’s was a great parish to work as a Curate, with good training from the Rector, Tim Anderson, as well as our youth worker, Johnny Beare from Ballinamallard.” As well as preaching and pastoral work, Gary was involved in the youth fellowship, mens’ ministry and prayer and Bible study small groups.

Prior to his studies, Gary worked for West Tyrone Voice, a victims’ support group based in Newtownstewart, with responsibility for training and research. Through his work there, he taught some classes on Irish history, and published a book in 2008: ‘Journeying Through Irish History: Exploding Myths.’ His primary degree was a BA in Politics from Queen’s University, Belfast.

Gary became a Christian in November 1992 through a mission in Dromore Cathedral as part of the Decade of Evangelism. “That night I realised that it isn’t about what I need to do to make God love me; but about what Jesus has done for me, in dying for me on the cross to rescue me from my sins and give me eternal life.” Ever since, Gary has been committed to teaching God’s word so that others can share the joy of salvation as they trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.

In his spare time (!) Gary enjoys photography, reading, and walking, and is excited to get to know Fermanagh better.

Gary is married to Lynsey, both natives of Dromore, County Down, and together they are looking forward to what God has in store as they live and minister in Aghavea.

Ernie Thompson (People's Churchwarden) and Alan Johnston (Rector's Churchwarden) welcome Revd Gary McMurray to Aghavea.


Date: September 2011