Carrickmacross mission team begin building homes in Malawi


Four members of the Carrickmacross Mission Team at the Commissioning Service.

A mission team led by Revd Colin McConaghie, Rector of the Carrickmacross Group of Churches in Clogher Diocese and one of his parishioners, Lorna Doran, have already begun work with the charity, Habitat for Humanity, to build homes for orphaned families in Malawi.

The 16 people of Carrickmacross Team Malawi 2019 left Dublin Airport on Sunday last and this week began their house-building programme.

The team members had taken part in a Service of Celebration and Commissioning in St. Finbarr’s Church, Carrickmacross on Sunday, 23 June attended by Jenny Williams, Chief Executive of Habitat for Humanity Ireland.

The team members are mostly from the Carrickmacross Group of Church of Ireland Parishes of Carrickmacross, Magheracloone and Ardragh and include several members of St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church in the town. They include; Janice Boylan, Westley Breaden, Siobhan Dolan, Lorna Doran, Dorothy Douglas, Anne Hill, Eleanor Howell, Philip Keegan, Jennifer Kenny, Victoria Lewis, Richard Malone, Caroline Merrin, Freddie Merrin, Colin McConaghie, David McElwaine and Finola O’Brien.

The Act of Commissioning was led by Jenny Williams, who spoke about the work of the charity in countries around the world including Malawi. She had attended a service in Carrickmacross almost a year ago where the idea of sending a mission team was suggested.

Jenny Williams of Habitat for Humanity during the Act of Commissioning for the team.

She said she hoped that team members would reach out to others long after returning from the trip.
Speaking about the charity, she said Habitat for Humanity had a mission to ensure everyone had a right to a safe place to live. Currently around 1.6 billion people had no-one they could call home. Since the charity was established, 22 million people have been served by them. Over the years they have developed new and innovative ways to help people. The charity works in partnership with local people.

“We break down barriers as we build up walls,” she said.

Revd McConaghie told the congregation that the team had already been on a “wonderful journey” preparing for the trip and were now looking forward to getting started.

During the service which included the Celebration of Holy Communion, the team members and congregation sang a number of moving hymns including “Come, now is the time to worship,” “Jesus, all for Jesus,” “Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah,” and “Bless the Lord Oh my soul.”

Two members of the team led the readings.

The team has had tremendous community support in the Carrickmacross area from businesses, local organisations and from local people.

Revd McConaghie said: “We are extremely grateful to everyone. We know God is at the centre of this work and we have been extremely blessed in the support we have received.”

Joint leader, Lorna Doran said: “We are proud to be representing Carrickmacross in the work we will do alongside Habitat for Humanity. We believe the vision of Habitat that every person deserves a suitable home reflects Jesus’ call for us to feed the poor and reach out to those on the margins of society.”

The team are due to arrive home on 12 July.