|Rev. Ken McGrath
to be instituted as Vicar for the Development of New
The Rev. Ken McGrath, the first clergyman to
hold the title of ‘Vicar for the Development of New Ministris’
in the Diocese of Connor will be instituted at Lisburn Cathedral
on Sunday 29th January at 6.00 pm. Mr. McGrath’s appointment is
for a period of three years and his selection for the position
came about in three stages.
Initially, Cathedral Rector Rev. Sam Wright
discussed the possibility with him and asked that he and his
wife Annette consider staying on in the parish.
Both they and the Select Vestry agreed enthusiastically and
the next step was for the Bishop Right Rev. Alan Harper and the
Church of Ireland to approve the appointment.
The Rector, and the Cathedral's Parochial
Nominators then met the Bishop and the Diocesan Nominators for a
Board of Nomination in Church House, Belfast on Thursday
November 24, which approved the appointment.
The legal title of Vicar is a recent addition
to the Church of Ireland Constitution and is not just another
name for Rector.
It is a title with specific role attached and
a contract for a specific time period.
"The appointment provides church-wide
recognition of the increased responsibilities Ken has taken on
in developing innovative ministries for students and migrant
workers, as well as providing increased oversight for a wide
variety of ministry that takes place through the Cathedral,"
added Rev. Wright.
The Rector explained that staff at the Cathedral
was made up of Rev. McGrath, Youth Outreach Worker Keith Neill
They and their families have formed a strong
leadership team over the past three years and are all delighted
they can continue to pray, plan and work together under God's
They also aim to provide further leadership
for the parishioners of Lisburn Cathedral and the church plant
in Hillhall over the coming three years.
"This leadership team believe strongly that
God is saying Ken and his family have come to Lisburn 'for such
a time as this'.
"A time when God is pouring out his favour on
the church as seen particularly in the recent REACT mission; and
prompting and leading the Cathedral into new territory in
ministering among students and those from other cultures and
countries," added Rev. Wright.
"Who better to co-ordinate this work than
someone with a back-ground in teaching, who has lived and worked
in another country and who has first hand experience of cultural
"It is for us an affirmation of God's leading
that the Select Vestry and wider church, not only wholeheartedly
embraced this idea and agreed to Ken's promotion, but also
appointed him to the position of Vicar." Parishioners have
greeted the news of this appointment with delight and are
thrilled that Ken and Annette (who has recently taken on the
role of a Commissioned Minister for All Age Worship) and their
children Charlotte and John are staying on to work among the
people and the community in and around Lisburn Cathedral.
The Bishop of Connor, the Right Rev Alan
Harper will lead the Service on Sunday at 6.00pm.
Rev Maurice Elliott (Shankill Parish, Lurgan)
will preach the sermon.