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Lisburn, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 

Ballinderry Moravian minister to retire to South Africa

The Rev. Eckhard Buchholz and his wife Cathy pictured at his farewell sermon in Ballinderry Moravian Church last Sunday morning (25th June 2006).  Also included are committee members L to R: Henry Wilson, Violet Best and Marilyn Marshall.

The Rev. Eckhard Buchholz and his wife Cathy pictured at his farewell sermon in Ballinderry Moravian Church last Sunday morning (25th June 2006).  Also included are committee members L to R: Henry Wilson, Violet Best and Marilyn Marshall.

The Rev. Eckhard Buchholz preached his farewell sermon at Ballinderry Moravian Church last Sunday morning (25th June 2006).  The church was well attended for the occasion.  In the course of his sermon Mr Buchholz said, “The 3½ years ministry in Ballinderry was a time of mutual dialogue and great experience of Christian fellowship. He expressed his thanks to all who supported him and showed their devotion to the message of love and reconciliation. For the future he wished to the congregation and the succeeding student minister, Patsy Holdsworth, a new vision for the Moravian outreach in Ballinderry.”

After the service, Henry Wilson passed on the sincere gratitude of the congregation to the Rev. Eckhard Buchholz and his wife Cathy for the love, friendship and fellowship of their 3½ years Ministry at Ballinderry, from which the congregation has been richly blessed.  Henry then presented the Rev. Eckhard Buchholz with a gift cheque, Bible and Irish Linen; and Marilyn Marshall presented Mrs. Cathy Buchholz with a floral arrangement.

Eckhard Buchholz was born in German occupied Poland and after his school education in Germany; he finished his training as an electrician.  At the age of sixteen he felt called into the ministry and after six years theological training he was sent to South Africa.  At first he did administrative work and was ordained in 1970. He served Ntlola and Baziya congregations in the Transkei, now Eastern Cape.  This was where he met his wife Catherine, where going with a black lady was a criminal offence, but the congregations stood by him.  On his return to Germany in 1976 they were married in Berlin and served as representatives of the Moravian Church in North-Rhein-Westphalia where they were involved in anti-apartheid activities and public relations for the Moravian Mission.

In 1986 they felt they should go back to Africa.  After two years he got a call to the Rukwa Province in Tanzania as teacher at the Bible School and also as project advisor and administrator of the Moravian Theological College in Mbeya.  So they went, this time together with their three children, all girls.

In 1992 the Moravians needed them in Palatinate, Germany, where they again represented the Moravian Mission and the work involved a mixture of lecturing, preaching, collection money, house visiting, conferencing and social engagements.

They wanted to be involved in congregational work again and he asked for church ministry in America.  However they were asked to serve in the British Province. The Board sent them to Northern Ireland where they moved into the Moravian Manse at Finaghy Road South.  He was installed at Ballinderry on the 17th November 2002.  In addition to his duties at Ballinderry, he was also minister of Cliftonville Moravian Church in North Belfast.

Mr Buchholz and his wife Cathy will leave for South Africa mid August and will live in Port Shepstone, 110km South of Durban.