The Rector of the Parish of Glendermott and Newbuildings, Rev Robert Boyd, was honoured by his Select Vestry on Monday evening at a physically-distanced celebration marking the 30th anniversary of his ordination.
Parish officers sat a couple of metres apart from one another as they listened to the Secretary, Albert Smallwoods, recall Rev Boyd’s move from what the Rector himself called “a real job” into a life of ministry.
“On the 24th June, 1990,” Mr Smallwoods said, “the Rector got out of bed as Mr Robert Boyd, and he went to bed that evening as the Reverend Robert Boyd.”
Social distancing guidelines meant that all those present – with the exception of the Rector and his wife, May – sat at tables spread around the main hall in the Parish Centre, across the street from Glendermott Church.
Rev Boyd told the gathering that whichever parish he had served in he had always enjoyed the experience, but it had always been a challenge. “It’s definitely been a challenge these last three months,” he joked. “It’s the first time I’ve ever closed down a church. But I’ve been here three years; the Bishop’s been here three months and he’s closed down the Diocese.”
Mrs Boyd also addressed the meeting. She said she had been nervous at the prospect of coming to the city initially because it had seemed so far out of her comfort zone. “But from the minute I arrived here I’ve just loved it. I’m so happy here – I hope he doesn’t mess it up.”
Vestry member Colin Lowry presented Mrs Boyd with a bouquet of flowers, in appreciation of her contribution to her husband’s ministry; Adrienne Edgar presented the couple with a gift on behalf of the parish. And Mr Smallwoods presented the Rector with an inscribed piece of crystal to commemorate the 30th anniversary of his ordination.