The Presbyterian Church in Ireland (PCI) has launched its third Recognition Awards to celebrate the exceptional contributions of its staff and volunteers in congregations, homes and support units across Ireland – many of which are located in rural areas.
The Church, across its 500-plus congregations and 17 homes and support units, is asking its members if they know of someone, or a team of people, who are making an outstanding contribution in the area of social witness.
Encouraging people to nominate those who make such a difference, Lindsay Conway, Council for Social Witness Secretary said, “Our church has hundreds of ‘unsung heroes’ – people who up and down the country and especially in rural communities, give tirelessly of themselves to make life a bit more tolerable and a little happier for hundreds, if not thousands of people.
“People matter to God, so they matter to us. We are called to demonstrate his love for people, which means putting of our faith into practical action and simple Christian caring, which is a powerful social witness of the gospel.
“It is also a very special kind of witness and we want to honour the contributions made by volunteers and staff as they reach out to others in different hands-on everyday ways.”
The 12 categories for staff and volunteers, which include awards for volunteering, safeguarding, promoting good practice, leadership and team of the year, have to be in by 30 November.
There are also awards for unsung heroes. For a full list of categories, guidelines and nomination forms see www.presbyterianireland.org/recognitionawards.
The awards started in 2012 and take place every two years. They will be presented by the Moderator, Dr Charles McMullen, at a special reception and buffet lunch in Assembly Buildings, Belfast, on 14 December.
“If one of your church groups is helping to meet the needs of your community in an exceptional way, or you know an individual who is making a real difference in demonstrating Christ’s love to others, or a member of staff in one of our homes or support units, please let us know!” Lindsay Conway said.