Equipping for Life for a better future

Letters and Reports 2019/20
Stacks Image 456

December 2020: from Brother David
  Hello Brothers and Sisters.  I have been thinking recently again about forgiveness.  Maybe the decision not to hold a public enquiry into the murder of Pat Finucane brought it right back into the forefront of my mind.  Pat's family were obviously very angry at the Government's decision not to grant an enquiry, and said so very publicly.  I want to be respectful of what this family have been through, but I also want to say that there is another way out of the situation  -  and that is the way of forgiveness.  No matter what someone has done to us, through God and through forgiveness there is a way to find peace.  I had to learn this lesson when I was hurt deeply by someone many years ago.  I learnt it from Agnes Sanford, one of the great pioneers of the healing ministry in the 1940s and 1950s.  She says that forgiveness begins with a decision --  that no matter what someone has done to us we make the decision that we are going to forgive.  Then we start to bless the person in the name of Jesus and keep it up for as long as it takes.  In other words, if Jimmy upsets or hurts me I start to pray, ' Jimmy, I bless you, I bless you, I bless you, in the name of Jesus I bless you...........'  And I keep it up for as long as it takes. Brothers and Sisters, this has restored my peace on quite a few occasions when I have been hurt and angry.  We may have to work at it if the hurt has been deep, but if we are prepared to work at it it will work for us. A doctor who heard me speak on this theme went and practiced it himself.  Joyously he found that it works.  Now he says that if one third of the patients who come to him were prepared to practice forgiveness in the way I have described they would not need to go to a doctor.  

Important Collecting cakes and biscuits for the staff of schools - on Monday, November 30th team members brought mostly cakes and biscuits to be given out to teachers in the Shankill area.  The response was brilliant.  We must have collected upwards of 125 cakes.  We gave them out the same day, and the schools were both surprised and delighted by the gifts.  So sincere thanks for all of your generosity. At the same time as we gave out the cakes we also gave out 450 gifts to the children in the schools.    

Christmas cards for children We asked Volunteer Tutors to send a card to each of the children that we take for reading.  Please send these cards before 8th December. They are very important to the children.  

Prayer The next day of prayer, done at home in half hour slots, will be Friday, 15th January.  Please book your slot with Pat now.   Week of prayer for EfL will be at the beginning of Lent.  This will be from February 15 - 19 and will also be done at home in half hour slots.  

New Friends leaflet - this has just been produced by Jayne Forster.  It is very good.   Website - some pictures of the day we donated food to the Food Bank.   East Belfast - Canon Norman Jardine has agreed to take responsibilty for the work we are setting up in East Belfast   Warrenpoint and Rostrevor - I preached about EfL in both of these parishes on November 21.  It was well received.  Plans are well under way to set up in these two towns.  I hope that the other churches in that Rural Deanery will also come on board - Kilkeel, Newcastle, Annalong, Castlewellan, Rathfriland and Dundrum.   Ballyduff - this is an estate in Newtownabbey.  We hope to start working there after Christmas in co-operation with Bryson House.   In all the gifts given out to the children of the Shankill there was a card with this prayer for the children of the Shankill Road.

           
Dear Loving Heavenly Father, we bring before you at this Christmas season the young people of the Shankill Road. Lord, children are very important to you, but for these children and their families this year of 2020 has been a difficult one. Lord, we are asking that whatever challenges they have had to face in recent months that you will give them a good Christmas this year. May their hearts and their homes be filled with your peace and a sense of your presence in Jesus' name.
Amen
                           
St. John tells us that when Jesus came that a light has come into the world and the darkness has never extinguished it. May the good Lord shine that light very brightly for you at this season.                                             David Jardine  
December 4, 2020
For further information please contact: pat@equippingforlife.org.uk
                                                                                                   

Pat Hutchinson MBE  Development Officer Equipping for Life Days & Hours of work:

www.equippingforlife.org.uk Want to change how you receive these emails? You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday ( Working from Home) 8.00 am to 3.30 pm 07889572800 Please visit our website

November 2020: from Brother David

 
Hello, Brothers and Sisters, this is an important prayer letter.  We have a number of significant events coming up and if they are going to go well we need to release them to the Lord and allow Him to be in charge of them.  This is a lesson that one of my heroes of the faith had to learn, in very difficult circumstances.  But when he learnt it, it transformed his whole life and his whole ministry.  Hudson Taylor had gone to China in 1865 to found the China Inland Mission.  By 1900 he had 1,000 missionaries working with him.  As you can imagine so far from home, in an alien climate, life was hard for Hudson Taylor.  Indeed in the mid-1870s he was paralysed in a fall and had to go back to England to recover.  He was bed- ridden for much of the time, but that does not mean he was inactive.  Those who came to visit him noticed that at the bottom of the bed there was a huge map of China.  Taylor was constantly praying over it.  I cannot prove this but I believe that the seeds of the amazing Christian revival going on in China today were sowed by Hudson Taylor in prayer.  It is reckoned that there are between 100 and 200 million Christians in China today.
 
When Taylor went back to China his colleagues noticed that he had changed.  He still had huge responsibilities for the missionary work, but he had learned to rest in the Lord.  He did not worry about things any longer.  He simply rolled them over onto the Lord.  That was his spiritual secret - to depend on the Lord for everything.  It may have been a huge burden, or some new aspect of the ministry, or a health concern, or something apparently small or routine.  Whatever it was Taylor simply rolled it over onto the Lord and allowed Him to carry it.
 
My experience is that when I do this things go far better, and I can be at peace.  So let's roll over to the Lord all the upcoming events that I am going to mention now.
 

Last opportunity to sign on for the day of prayer for EfL on Friday, November 6.


At the last count we have between 70 and 80 signed on to do a half hour slot.  Would you like to be part of this day?  Why don't you make a commitment to yourself to set aside time to pray, even if it is not for a whole half hour?  The China Inland Mission would never have flourished if it had not been constantly surrounded in prayer.  This is our spiritual secret in EfL as well - to roll everything over on to the Lord.
 

An opportunity to make a contribution to the Food Bank in Shankill Methodist and to the Baby Basics Unit in the Spectrum Centre


This will take place on Friday, November 13 between 10am and 12 noon.  You do not need to delay.  You can simply hand in your contribution and leave immediately.  If you do not wish to give in goods you can make a financial contribution in both places.
Shankill Methodist is a quarter of a mile past Agnes St / Northumberland St. on the right hand side, at the corner of Berlin St.
Baby Basics are given in at the Shankill Road side of the Spectrum Centre. The name of the Unit is The Connect Base.
Please try to be generous.
 

Transforming Lives for Good  


This is a ministry which is offering two courses online to train people to mentor children in upper primary school, to help them with emotional development. We are not being asked to work with them, but simply to take advantage of their training.
There are two courses - Saturday, November 21 from 9.30 to 12.30 and 1.30 to 4.30pm then the same course on November 30 from 6.30pm to 9.30pm and December 2 from 6.30 to 9.30pm
 
If you are interested please contact Sister Karen Webb of the Church Army at

karen.webb@churcharmy.org
 

New day of prayer starting on Wednesday, 18th November


There will be two prayer meetings, just the same as Tuesday, which will still continue.  They will be at 10am and 11.30am, every Wednesday in the Argyle Centre.  Please think about joining one of these prayer meetings.  They are the lifeblood of this ministry.
 

Telephone prayer meeting on Facebook


I take part every fortnight in the Facebook prayer meeting in St. Paul's, Lisburn.  I felt last week that we could have one of these for Efl.  We will start after Christmas.  I will give you more details in the next prayer letters.
 

Cakes as a gift to the staff of schools


Some team members are still, understandably, cautious about going back to schools yet.  But we can still show acts of kindness to parents, children and school staff.  I am making the suggestion that as many as possible of us could bake a cake, which would then be distributed to school staff, and possibly to parents at the gates of schools.  
Please think about baking a cake for towards the end of November.
 

Gifts to parents


We are thinking of ways to connect with parents and to support them in what has been a challenging number of months.  So we are going to give a section of the parents who come to collect their children at the gates a gift -- probably sweets to the value of two pounds.  This will be given in a nice little basket, with a card inside - a message from EfL on one side and a prayer for the family on the other.  We hope to have Santa Claus in person to give out the gifts.  It's a busy season for him, but we have someone making a contact for us.
It has been difficult for us up to now to find ways to get close to parents. Please pray that this gesture will help to open doors.
 

Week of Prayer for EfL
This will be held at the beginning of Lent.  The dates are February 15 - 19.
 
I said at the beginning that a number of significant events are coming up.  They are not just significant.  With many of them we are breaking new ground.  Why don't we do what Hudson Taylor would have done and roll them over onto the Lord?  If enough of us do that, then they really will go well.
 
                    May the good Lord continue to be with you,
 
 
 
 David Jardine
Thursday, 5th November, 2020

September 2020: from Brother David

September 2020 Prayer leaflet

Hello, Brothers and Sisters. I am sending you a new and updated prayer leaflet, and praying that you will use it regularly. I have given you some guidelines for prayer in this leaflet. Please feel free to add your own specific requests.

Thanksgiving - that after 5 months of lockdown the vast majority of our Volunteers are still on board. We continue to pray God's blessing and protection on all of them
Give thanks that the chance to go back in to schools, the opportunity to see the children again, is not too far away.
Also give thanks that the last few months have given us more time to pray for EfL, and that the leadership team has been able to plan for the future.

We pray God's blessing - on all the children in schools where we take classes, and especially on those who come to us for reading.

The staff of schools who have had to work very hard during lockdown

Head Teachers - Genevieve McSorley, Lisa Grimason, Wesley Wright, Judith Stevenson, Alison Hutchinson, Janet Lyness, Jill Black, Stephen Osborne, Emma Clarke, Janet Douds.

Schools in Rathcoole, Monkstown, Taughmonagh and Lisburn which we hope to be going in to soon, and especially for our Volunteers who are waiting patiently.

Team leaders in the Greater Shankill area - Carole Sleator, Noleen Neill and Brian Gordon ( all Malvern ), Dorothy Mawhinney ( Edenbrooke ), Heather Boyd ( Glenwood ), Jackie Mitchell ( Forth River ), Kate Henry ( Harmony ), Jayne Forster ( Springhill ), Heather Eakins ( Blackmountain ), George Lyons (Springfield ), Colin Dickenson ( Wheatfield ).

Areas where we are working in schools
Parents looking after children during lockdown

The children - that their education will not be damaged by current circumstances
Schools as they prepare to reopen, especially for the protection of staff, children and visitors - that there may be no outbreak of corona virus

That EfL will soon be able to get in to schools, safely and securely

The 4 Volunteer Tutors who will have responsibility for our work in the Greater Shankill area, including the starting up of Homework Clubs - Carole Sleator, Heather Boyd, Darrin Barr and Jenny Hurst

Future Plans
Plans to open up in Rostrevor, Downpatrick and East Belfast, that we may get the right link church in all of these areas

The team organising East Belfast --Canon Norman Jardine, Rev. Paul Jeffrey, Jackie Mitchell, Irene Lowry and Evelyn Jamison

Negotiations led by Jenny Hurst to get in to the Boys' and Girls' Model to take young people for reading

Developing the group Friends of EfL ( Organiser Jayne Forster ). Please pray that our Friends newsletters will raise awareness of EfL in the community, and that the number of Friends will grow quickly

Finding someone between the age of 35 and 50 who could be a potential future leader of EfL

That the Lord will continue to give us new ideas to help develop EfL

Exploring with a Christian ministry how to develop sport in our areas of concern

Developing a team to take EfL to other parts of Northern Ireland

Someone to act as a new treasurer
Other important areas of ministry
Staff of EfL - Pat Hutchinson, Colin Dickenson, David Jardine. Also Tommy Stewart, facilitator, and Gordon Bell, Chairman of the Board

Finances - that the Lord will provide all the money we need

Speaking engagements for David Jardine and the team - that we will get the right number of engagements to promote EfL and find VTs

God's blessing on the leaflet with instructions how to set up a branch of EfL in another area

Working with Rev. Scott McDonald and Rev. Adrian Dorrian to develop work in Downpatrick

Opportunity to send VTs into Ligoniel Primary school

Setting up Homework Clubs

That all of those who receive the prayer leaflet may use it every day

Continued development of our website. Alan Graham, organiser. Videos and profiles

Our Patrons - Archbishop Robin Eames
Sir Nigel Hamilton
Baroness May Blood
Rev. Jim Rea
Sincere thanks for all you prayers. May the good Lord continue to be with you

David Jardine
Equipping for Life – Office Mobile 07889572800- Pat Hutchinson

August 14 2020: from Brother David

14 Aug 2020 Prayer leaflet

Hello, Brothers and Sisters.  I am sending you a new and updated prayer leaflet, and praying that you will use it regularly.   I have given you some guidelines for prayer in this leaflet.  Please feel free to add your own specific requests.

Thanksgiving - that after 5 months of lockdown the vast majority of our Volunteers are still on board.  We continue to pray God's blessing and protection on all of them
Give thanks that the chance to go back in to schools, the opportunity to see the children again, is not too far away
Also give thanks that the last few months have given us more time to pray for EfL, and that the leadership team has been able to plan for the future.

We pray God's blessing  -  on all the children in schools where we take classes, and especially on those who come to us for reading

The staff of schools who have had to work very hard during lockdown

Head Teachers - Genevieve McSorley, Lisa Grimason, Wesley Wright, Judith Stevenson, Alison Hutchinson, Janet Lyness, Jill Black, Stephen Osborne, Emma Clarke, Janet Douds.

Schools in Rathcoole, Monkstown, Taughmonagh and Lisburn which we hope to be going in to soon, and especially for our Volunteers who are waiting patiently.

Team leaders in the Greater Shankill area - Carole Sleator, Noleen Neill and Brian Gordon ( all Malvern ), Dorothy Mawhinney ( Edenbrooke ), Heather Boyd ( Glenwood ), Jackie Mitchell ( Forth River ), Kate Henry ( Harmony ), Jayne Forster ( Springhill ), Heather Eakins ( Blackmountain ), George Lyons (Springfield ), Colin Dickenson ( Wheatfield ).

Areas where we are working in schools
Parents looking after children during lockdown

 The children - that their education will not be damaged by current circumstances
Schools as they prepare to reopen, especially for the protection of staff, children and visitors - that there may be no outbreak of corona virus

That EfL will soon be able to get in to schools, safely and securely

The 4 Volunteer Tutors who will have responsibility for our work in the Greater Shankill area, including the starting up of Homework Clubs - Carole Sleator, Heather Boyd, Darrin Barr and Jenny Hurst

Future Plans
Plans to open up in Rostrevor, Downpatrick and East Belfast, that we may get the right link church in all of these areas

The team organising East Belfast --Canon Norman Jardine, Rev. Paul Jeffrey, Jackie Mitchell, Irene Lowry and Evelyn Jamison

Negotiations led by Jenny Hurst to get in to the Boys' and Girls' Model to take young people for reading

Developing the group Friends of EfL ( Organiser Jayne Forster ).  Please pray that our Friends newsletters will raise awareness of EfL in the community, and that the number of Friends will grow quickly

Finding someone between the age of 35 and 50 who could be a potential future leader of EfL

That the Lord will continue to give us new ideas to help develop EfL

Exploring with a Christian ministry how to develop sport in our areas of concern

Developing a team to take EfL to other parts of Northern Ireland

Someone to act as a new treasurer
Other important areas of ministry
Staff of EfL - Pat Hutchinson, Colin Dickenson, David Jardine.  Also Tommy Stewart, facilitator, and Gordon Bell, Chairman of the Board

Finances - that the Lord will provide all the money we need

Speaking engagements for David Jardine and the team - that we will get the right number of engagements to promote EfL and find VTs

God's blessing on the leaflet with instructions how to set up a branch of EfL in another area

Working with Rev. Scott McDonald and Rev. Adrian Dorrian to develop work in Downpatrick

Opportunity to send VTs into Ligoniel Primary school

Setting up Homework Clubs

That all of those who receive the prayer leaflet may use it every day

Continued development of our website. Alan Graham, organiser.  Videos and profiles

Our Patrons  -  Archbishop Robin Eames
                      Sir Nigel Hamilton
                      Baroness May Blood
                      Rev. Jim Rea
Sincere thanks for all you prayers.  May the good Lord continue to be with you

David Jardine
Equipping for Life – Office Mobile 07889572800- Pat Hutchinson

July 1 2020: from Brother David
Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Hello, Brothers and Sisters.
As we make the first tentative steps to move out of the lockdown I hope you are still coping well with the situation which is changing and evolving on an almost daily basis.
In the past week I have had to go back to a form of prayer which has stood me in good stead in the past - the prayer of surrender. This is based around Psalm 55 v. 24. - ' Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you......' I learnt it in New York in 1985, when a difficult set of circumstances arose. I found that through surrendering the situation to the Lord, and refusing to take it back, I had a peace and strength that I could have found in no other way.
Some time ago I had to go back to practising the prayer of surrender again - a set of circumstances which, even after a number of weeks, was not opening up. After a series of efforts had yielded no fruit, I took at least a full hour of prayer to surrender the whole thing to the Lord. At the end of that time I was completely at peace. Two or three hours later I received a phone call to tell me that the situation had been completely resolved. When I let go the Lord had the freedom to bring a solution.
Brothers and Sisters, I say to myself, and maybe suggest to you as well, that we don't have to carry burdens and anxieties ourselves. If we give them to the Lord, ( and maybe it will take time to let go ), we can find peace, and also give the Lord the freedom to sort the whole thing out.

May I share with you a prayer written by Teresa of Avila ;

Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things pass away,
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things,
He who has God
Finds he lacks nothing.
God alone suffices.

Morning of Prayer for EfL - Wednesday, July 8 between 10 am and 12.30 pm (any time you can spare between these hours )

Some suggested prayer topics;

That we will get back into schools as soon as is safely possible.
For the children, especially those whom we take personally for reading.
Approaches to the Boys' and Girls' Model - encouraging response.
Opening up work in East Belfast, Rostrevor and Downpatrick.
That the team of VTs will remain together, intact, during lockdown.
Plenty of speaking engagements for David Jardine

Going back in to schools
Still no clear word on when we will get back. Let us continue to pray that that will not be too long.

Other ways to help children
Could I ask you to do some thinking on this subject? Other possible ways to help children - through the churches, after school clubs, homework clubs?

Online course
This is being organised by Sister Karen Webb, Church Army. It is aimed at those working with children to help with emotional development. The course will be online, led by a teacher from Malvern school. It will not take place yet for a couple of months. We will keep you posted.

Downpatrick Primary school
I have been to see the Head Teacher, Mr. Niall Stevenson, and Rev. Scott McDonald of Down Parish. I was given a very good welcome, and the opportunity to send in Volunteers when that becomes possible again.

Secondary schools
Jenny Hurst, one of our Volunteers in Glenwood, has made contact with both Boys' and Girls' Model schools. Jenny was given a very good welcome, with the possibility of opening up reading classes in both of these schools when lockdown is lifted.

Friends of Equipping for Life
We hope to be in a position to send out the first Newsletter very soon. Jayne Forster told me last night that we now have 121 Friends of EfL. This is a good number in a short time. Please continue to ask your friends and contacts if they would like to join us. They are only being asked to make a very small commitment. Jayne's email is: jayne.forster@ntlworld.com

May I finish with the prayer of surrender again? If any difficulties or anxieties have arisen during lockdown, and you have struggled to find a solution, why not try releasing them to the Lord, and leaving them there. Hopefully, that will give you peace, and allow the Lord to bring a breakthrough.

May the good Lord give you peace during this coming week.

David
June 24 2020: from Brother David
Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Hello, Brothers and Sisters. I have been talking this past week to a young man, based in Willowfield Parish, who is involved in doing Christian work in 44 schools. In the course of our conversation he mentioned that in their ministry, working in many disadvantaged areas, they try to serve people with a standard of excellence. I asked him to explain how that works out in practice. He said that when he goes in to a school he is aware that he is representing Christ and the Church. So he wants to give of his very best.

He told me that on one occasion, in a school where he was on the Board of Governors, they needed a lollipop man to take the children across the road. So without a moment's hesitation he donned the uniform and did the job.
I think that in
Equipping for Life we are offering a very high standard of service. I have always commented that, in whatever school I go in to, the relationship between pupils and Volunteer Tutors is excellent. Could we just keep in the forefront of our minds that this is the standard we are always aiming for—a standard of excellence, representing Christ and his Church. Do you think we should try to get that incorporated into our logo in some way?

Future policy
One of our main policies is to take EfL into as many parts of Northern Ireland as we can. At the moment Rostrevor and East Belfast are definite starters. We are moving towards getting set up in both locations. Next week I am going to see a Head Teacher in a town 20 miles from Belfast. I hope to have something positive to report in my next email. One other major location is very close to being clinched.

Friends of EfL
This is the new group we are setting up within the ministry, a group of people whom I will call ' supporters of EfL.' At the moment we have almost 100 Friends signed up. The commitment asked is of a very low level - to receive our newsletter every 6 or 8 weeks, to let others know about EfL, and to pray for us occasionally.
May I ask you again to try to find some Friends - family members, Church members, friends, acquaintances, your minister, whoever. Just get their name, email or postal address and send these details to Jayne Forster at jayne.forster@ntlworld.com

Donations
We are moving very close to having a donate button on the website. Until we get that fixed up, if you wish to make a donation, you can use our bank details which are:
Bank Name: Danske Bank
Account Name: Equipping for Life
Sort code: 950679
Account number: 00183695

Website
Tommy Stewart will be doing an interview with Sir Nigel Hamilton soon. Nigel is one of our Patrons. He went to the Boys' Model school and is still passionate about helping the children of the area that he grew up in. The website address is www.equippingforlife.org.uk

Going back in to schools
Although we have no specific details about when we will be able to go back safely in to schools I feel that our future there will be very important. In fact, my spiritual discernment is that, when schools re-open they will need us more than ever before, because of what many children will have lost in that time.

Volunteer Tutors for East Belfast
We will progress in East Belfast the way we did on the Shankill - start with one or two schools and then at intervals build on that. Would you please keep an eye out for people who could be Volunteers in East Belfast, even if it is the end of the year before we are going in to schools there?

Please remember that in EfL what we are trying to offer is a standard of excellence - in everything that we do representing Christ and his Church, trying to give the best service we possibly can.

May the good Lord continue to be with you during the coming week.

David Jardine
June 10 2020: Some thoughts on 'Excellence and the importance of Role Models' from Brother David
10th June 2020

Hello, Brothers and Sisters, this period of lockdown gives us time to reflect. I have been thinking about the famous world class people produced by areas like the Shankill in years gone by. Just a couple of months ago Harry Gregg died. He was best known as a hero of the Munich air disaster, but he was also voted the greatest goalkeeper in the world at the 1958 World Cup. I remember him playing and he richly deserved that honour. Harry always said he was very proud of his working class roots.
Ruby Murray came from the Donegal Road. In the late 50s and 60s she had 5 records in the top 20 at the same time, an achievement that has never been repeated.
Amy Carmichael went from a church in a tin hut on the Shankill Road to become a famous missionary in India, acknowledged world - wide for her work amongst disadvantaged children and the many spiritual books she wrote.
Sir James Galway and Sir Kenneth Branagh were both born and brought up in York St.
George Best, the greatest footballer I have ever seen, came from the Cregagh Estate in East Belfast.
The Ulster Scots migration to the United States produced 10 Presidents of the United States. My favourite is Woodrow Wilson, whose grandfather left Strabane in 1807.
I have not space to mention any more, but the list is very long. The point I want to make is that the Shankill and other Loyalist areas, the places where we work, are not producing many world class people like that any longer. We want to help to change that situation. I believe that principally two things need to be emphasised - a renewal of the faith, and education. In a modest way in EfL we are trying to make a contribution with both.

Rathcoole and Monkstown
The team were in place to go in to 3 schools in this area, until corona intervened. Gail Anderson, from South Belfast Methodist church, is doing a great job in organising the work there, but it is bigger than what we had anticipated. If anyone could give Gail a hand it would be much appreciated. This would probably involve organising prayer support there, which is absolutely key to the success of the mission.

Head Teachers
I emailed all Head Teachers in the Greater Shankill last week. Four of them managed to get back to me. It would be fair to say that even for them there is uncertainty about the future, so I have no clear guidance for the Volunteers. We need to keep praying that we will get back in as soon as possible.

Friends of Equipping for Life
At the moment we have almost 50 Friends. People who will support EfL in whatever way they can : receiving our literature, passing it on, helping to raise the profile of EfL, praying for us occasionally, and sometimes making a donation to the ministry. It is not a big commitment. Nobody has said no to me yet. But I need help with this new venture. I would be grateful if you could play your part in this, contacting as many people as you can. You just need to send the name and email or postal address of the person to Jayne Forster at jayne.forster@ntlworld.com

Prayer for our Land next Sunday, 14th June ( 3 - 4pm )
I felt God say a long time ago that in Northern Ireland we will never be anything less than completely dependant upon Him, even when we get over the current pandemic. The challenges are too great. We will be praying for a long time to come.
Two topics - the ongoing relationship between Sinn Fein and the DUP and
that a way will be found to give pensions to those who suffered in the Troubles.

Video
The interviews that Tommy Stewart has been doing have been a big success. Last week there was a video with Rev. Arthur Young, responsible for the work in Lisburn. This week there will be one with Mrs. Judith Stevenson, Head Teacher of Forth River.

Donations
We have been working on a Donate button for the website. It is not yet ready. What I can do in the meantime is give you the bank details of EfL, if you wish to make a donation. They are Sort Code 950679 and the account number 00183695 .

East Belfast
We have a team ready to run East Belfast. One original member has had to withdraw, for very understandable reasons. But another very good person has been able to step in and we are very grateful for that.

May I finish this week by saying that if we continue to pray for EfL as much as possible during this period of lockdown the ministry will not just survive when restrictions are lifted, it will actually thrive.

May the good continue to be with you and your families,



David Jardine
June 4 2020: from Brother David
June 4, 2020
Hello, Brothers and Sisters. In recent years I have been reading the biographies of great men and women of God.  All of them were great people of prayer.  So I thought I would share with you some of the things that they said on that theme:
David Wilkerson, founder of Teen Challenge:
‘God always makes a way for a praying person. '
‘Find the poor. Help those who can do nothing for you, who can give you nothing back in return.  Then watch God bless you. '
‘I go to the Lord for everything. '
'Don't live for the world. Live every waking hour as if it were your last.  The true revelation of Christ belongs to those who live as pilgrims here on earth. '
Billy Graham
Billy's son Franklin said that if he was watching television with his father, and they were reporting a disaster, Billy would turn the TV off and say, ' Franklin, let's pray for those people who have suffered. '
The prophet Isaiah
‘Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee. '
Andrew Murray, South African minister
‘What God says to us in prayer is far more important than what we say to God.'
 
I have found that there are two main ways for a ministry to be blessed: firstly, give the ministry to the Lord, allow Him to be in charge.  Secondly, surround the ministry in prayer. '
 
Prayer for our Land
The next weekly time of prayer is Sunday, 7th June from 3 - 4pm. Please keep praying. The sooner we get on top of this virus the sooner we will be able to get safely back into schools.
 
East Belfast
In the past week we have found two people, good people, who are prepared to take responsibility for organising EfL moving to East Belfast.  There may be a third inside the next few days.  This is all we needed to make a start in East Belfast.  Everything else is in place for when the lockdown is lifted.  Praise God!
 
Rostrevor
We have been given a warm welcome by clergy and lay people to open a branch of EfL in Rostrevor.  I am always pleased when the initiative comes from local people.  This seems to me to be God's invitation.  I am hoping that, in time, this invitation to Rostrevor will open up the way to other opportunities in that part of County Down.
 
Videos
There are now two very good interviews with Volunteer Tutors, Irene Lowry and Paul Jeffrey, in the profile section of the website ( www.equippingforlife.org.uk   ) On Wednesday, 4th June Tommy Stewart will do another video interview with Rev. Arthur Young, who is our host in Lisburn. I know that will be good as well.
 
Friends of Equipping for Life
I said last week that we are setting up a group called Friends of Equipping for Life.  They will support EfL in whatever way they can - receiving our literature, passing it on to other people, promoting EfL, praying sometimes for us, and making an occasional donation.
At the moment we have 20 - 30 signed up to be Friends.  Will you please ask some people in your circle of influence to become Friends?  This will lighten the load for everyone.
Please send the name and email address, or postal address, to Jayne Forster at jayne.forster@ntlworld.com
 
I have often said that prayer is not just talking to God, it is also listening.  Since I started to set time aside to listen about three weeks ago I feel that my prayer has an extra vitality and the Lord has given me some very good ideas about moving the ministry forward.  Could I suggest that, whatever is concerning you, set aside time to listen, ask the Lord to help you to hear, and see what He says.  I will be surprised if that does not make a difference.
 
So ' let us run with resolution the race that is set before us, our eyes fixed on Jesus, on whom faith depends from start to finish. '
 
Thank you for everything you continue to do for Equipping for Life 
.
                                        David Jardine 
May 2020: Update from Bro. David

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Hello, Brothers and Sisters, I hope you are still coping well with lockdown.  The good weather has been a blessing to us, especially if we have some space around the house where we can take fresh air.
During the past week I have gone back to spending time listening to God.  I asked Him to give me some guidance on the way forward for Equipping for Life.  I felt that He gave me three things: Firstly, He told me not to limit the ministry just to the areas where we are working now, or about to go in to. He said to start to take the ministry to the whole of Northern Ireland.  Secondly, I asked Him for guidance on how to get involved in working with teenagers.  He said to go through the Secondary schools.  The structure there would enable us to make a meaningful contribution.  Thirdly, I felt the Lord telling me to form a group of  'Friends of Equipping for Life '  - individual people, groups, churches, clergy, organisations - receiving our communications, promoting the ministry, possibly praying for us and making a financial contribution.
I then felt the Lord say that this is enough in the meantime.  All of these activities will require a lot of work to get them up and running.
I would appreciate any comments or suggestions you would like to make about this proposed way forward in the short term.
 
SOME OTHER MATTERS
 
1 East Belfast
Bishop David McClay has given us a warm welcome to come and work in East Belfast.  I feel that in the days to come he will be a good friend to the ministry.
 
2   Spiritual food on the radio and internet
On Sunday past I listened to the service on Radio 4 at 8.10am.  Then I listened to the service on Radio Ulster at 10.15am.  At 11am I went Livestream with Lowe Memorial Presbyterian Church.  All were excellent.  There is a lot of very rich spiritual food available on the media at the moment.
 
3 Friends of Equipping for Life
Could you start to think about people, clergy, churches, organisations who could become Friends of EfL?  Before very long we could start to contact them.
 
4 Website
I think our website has some very good stuff on it at the moment.  Could I ask you please to recommend it to your friends?  Encourage them to visit it.  I think the section on profiles is particularly good.
I am doing a short video on the website today Wednesday at 2pm.  It should be up a short time after that. www.equippingforlife.org.uk 
 
5 Prayer for our Land
The next hour of prayer for our land will be on Sunday, May 17 from 3 - 4pm.  If you feel that you can fast some of us start at 6pm Saturday and go through to 6pm Sunday.
 
6 Morning of Prayer for EfL
The next morning of prayer will be Wednesday, June 3 from 10am to 12.30pm.  Maybe you could spare some time to pray during those hours?
                                  
                                             David Jardine
                                         

April 2020 Report on EfL from Brother David
It would have been hard to predict in October, 2018, when Equipping for Life sent the first 8 Volunteer Tutors in to Forth River school at the top of the Shankill Road that 18 months later we would have more than 130 VTs in schools.  Yet that is the position today.  Our progress has been temporarily halted because of the corona virus, but that will come to an end, even if it takes a few months. Our role then, taking children on a one to one basis for reading, will be even more important.

After establishing ourselves in Forth River school, over the following months we received invitations from  the other 8 schools in the Greater Shankill area. Since September, 2019, we have had 8 VTs going in to each one of those schools every week.  Indeed, we even have three groups going in to Malvern P.S.

Invitations then started to come to us from other areas.  We were all set up to start in 3 schools in Rathcoole and Monkstown after Easter, until corona intervened. The same thing has happened in Tonagh and Knockmore in Lisburn.
But this only a delay.  We are keeping in touch with our 80 VTs on the Shankill and the 50 just about to start in Lisburn and Newtownabbey, so that we are ready to go when restrictions are lifted.  Almost all of these Volunteers have come through the churches, so it is worth saying that the Church has really stepped up to the mark to support this ministry.

Of course,we have plans for the future.  A team has been put in place to establish the work in East Belfast, a good team. We have plans to start homework clubs in the Shankill schools.  All the Head Teachers are very much in favour of this development.  We would like to get established in secondary schools in the area, again taking the young people for reading.  What we are really doing is playing to our strengths, building up areas of the work that we know we are good at.  Once the ministry is more deeply established we will then be in a position to take on further challenges, such as trying to get parents more involved in their childrens' education.

There are two things which are crucial for Equipping for Life.  First of all, everything we do is one to one.  The children really respond to this personal attention.  Secondly, the spiritual dimension.  We work hard at organising prayer in the background.  This is what makes us different and is the reason why the ministry has blossomed.  We are grateful to our God.
If you would like to be one of the people who prays for our ministry please contact Mrs. Pat Hutchinson at   
pat@equippingforlife.org.uk
We would be very glad of your support.

Brother David Jardine, Director
April 2020: EfL Prayer Letter from Bro. David
Download
0
March 2020: Beyond Corona—thoughts from Tommy Stewart
Stacks Image 431
Stacks Image 434
March 2020: EfL Prayer Letter from Bro. David
Download
0
Sept 2019: Leaflet explaining EfL
Sept 2019
0
March 2019: DHM Magazine Article about EfL by Elizabeth Porter
March 2019
0
Jan 2019: EfL Prayer Update by Bro. David
Jan 2019
0