The Bishop of Butere, Rt Revd Dr Tim Wambunya – who’s visiting the North West this week to discuss his diocese’s links with Derry and Raphoe – has thanked children attending the annual County Donegal Schools’ Service for supporting Anglican clergy back home in Kenya.
Parishes in Derry and Raphoe have raised more than £60,000 for the ‘Buy a Cow for Butere’ initiative. The money has been used to buy animals for ministers in the Kenyan diocese, with which Derry and Raphoe has strong links. The first Anglican church and girls’ school in the region were built by the son and daughter of a former Bishop of Derry and Raphoe, Rt Revd George Chadwick.
On Thursday morning, Bishop Wambunya – who is in Ireland with his wife Gertrude – joined around 500 pupils from 30 schools at the service in Ramelton Presbyterian Church. Bishop Wambunyathanked those children who had helped with the fund-raising for the ‘cows project’ for their generosity. The service was hosted by the patrons of Church of Ireland and Presbyterian-managed schools in County Donegal.
The mostly young congregation were welcomed to the church by the St Johnston Presbyterian Church’s minister, Revd Craig Wilson. Worship was led by the Moderator of the Derry and Donegal Presbytery, Revd Paul Linkens, who talked to the children about ‘encouragement’, and the Bishop of Derry and Raphoe, Rt Revd Ken Good, led the service.
Children from many of the schools present played a role in the service by performing readings or saying prayers. Among those prayed for were the victims of the recent earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia.
As the schoolchildren left the church to return to the buses which would ferry them back to class, each school was presented with a large ‘goody bag’.