The Annual Business meeting of Dervock Reformed Presbyterian Church was held in the church hall. The evening started with Rev. John A. Hawthorne giving thanks for the food, which was a three-course meal provided by the ladies of the church.
After this Mr.Hawthorne thanked the ladies for an excellent meal and welcomed all present and by their presence show an interest in congregational work. The meeting was opened with praise from Psalm 92 verses 1-4, followed by prayer.
Business commenced with the minutes of the previous meetings being read. These meetings were held on 14th February, 21st May, 26th July and 10th September 2011. Reports of all the congregations’ organisations had previously been typed, bound and circulated to all the members of the congregation.
The reports were presented by the secretaries and treasurers of each of the organisations.
Mr. Hawthorne thanked all who prepared and presented reports. Thanks was expressed to Miss Eileen Kerr for proof reading all these together with the congregations quarterly News Letter which all show diligence and faithful commitment.
Mr Hawthorne noted that we had lost two of our senior members through death, Dr Hugh J Blair, a faithful man even in the presence of weakness, and Mrs Isobel Nevin another faithful member. They are much missed within the church.
Mr William Bleakly then presented the Financial Report highlighting some important aspects of it. William stated that giving remained the same over the year for Freewill offering, but noted that the Youth Club and Sabbath School givings were down. The Gift day collections and giving to the building project over the year were really encouraging leaving this work almost debt free. Mr Hawthorne thanked William and Ruby for all their work in the conscious way money is handled and the time and effort put into looking after the finances.
Mr Hawthorne then thanked the precentors for leading the praise each Sabbath, the cleaner, those who opened and closed the building weekly, those who do outside work and the ladies for all their work.
These reports were adopted on the motion of Mr. David Millar (Jnr) and seconded by Mr Samuel Bleakly
Mr Stephen Hunter, Sabbath School Superintendent, asked Mrs Debbie McConaghie to present the Sabbath School prizes to the children. The pupils were congratulated for doing so well in the examination, although getting marks was good, the desire of all was that faith in God was taking a place in their hearts. Mr Hawthorne thanked the superintendent, teachers and all the young people who come and their parents for sending them.
Following this Mr Hawthorne likened the evening to a book-opening night, when the Minute Books are opened and the work done by the various organisations of the congregation in 2011 are reported on. ‘This and any subsequent book opening nights,’ said Mr Hawthorne, ‘are but a preparation for that final book-opening on the last day.’ In Revelation 20 verse12 the apostle John tells of the vision he was given of a day, yet future, when all men, the living and the dead, the small and great, will be called to give an account to God for their life in this world. And he looked John saw that a number of books were opened and all mankind was judged according to what was written in those books.
‘We can only make a limited and partial assessment of our situation and accomplishments based on our records,’ said Mr. Hawthorne, but on that day everything will be revealed and we and our works will be seen for what we are.
The book of memory, the book of scripture, with both law and gospel, the book of remembrance will be opened, along with the Book of Life. Mr. Hawthorne showed how the content of these books held implications for our life in this world.
‘By comparison our judgement of ourselves and the work we do from year to year, while important, is not as significant as the outcome of that great and final assize.’ Paul could say in 1Cor.
4 “It is a very small thing that I am judged by men, indeed I do not judge myself’, he who judges me is the Lord.” Therefore, we should live and do all our work as in the Lord’s sight and with the view of hearing him say at the last day, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord”
The final part of the evening was provided by Neville Dawson, reciting poetry then Neville & Jane Dawson, Stephen & Janice Hunter, Rhonda Bleakly and Marlene Millar singing some very nice pieces. Once again Mr Hawthorne thanked all for their presentation.
Mr Hawthorne closed the meeting with praise from Psalm 121and the benediction.