Welcome to SAMS

“Christian mission is about being inside out and upside down! It is about change and transformation. It turns individuals and communities inside out. It is about people in every nation discovering and living by the upside down values and priorities of God’s Kingdom.”

Bishop Ken Clarke (SAMS Mission Director)

Buena Vista no. 2

We have just published the latest Buena Vista, issue number 2. This edition focuses on:

  • Claire Holmes
  • Sewing projects in Paraguay
  • BTN trips
  • Red Box, and
  • Fusion volunteer David Alanis

To download Buena Vista 2 click on the image below. It’s a 6MB PDF file.
Buena Vista 2

Friday Night Live – 6th Feb 2009

The SAMS team are busy preparing the next Friday Night Live 2009. This year the event has had to move to a larger venue – the Craigavon Civic Centre – due to the enormous interest last year.

Another exciting programme is planned. Ckick the image below to download the invitation for more details.

Friday Night Live 2009

La Caldera, Salta Team Trip 2008

La Caldera 2008In July this year twelve young people from Down and Dromore Diocese will travel to La Caldera in Salta, Argentina for a three week Beyond the Norm trip. For some it will be their first mission experience, for everyone it will be an adventure.

Aims of the trip

  • To work in fellowship with Christians from the Diocese of Northern Argentina and experience the Kingdom of God at work in another culture.
  • To assist in the modernisation of La Caldera retreat centre – helping the Diocese become more financially independent. Read more in a recent post.
  • To deepen the links between the Church of Ireland and the Diocese of Northern Argentina – to share your faith, work hard, and be an ambassador for Christ and the Church in Ireland.

La Caldera TeamBackground to the Project
The retreat centre takes its name from the La Caldera village, where it is located. In early colonial times the area was a stop-over place for mule-caravans that travelled the trail connecting Buenos Aires with Lima, Peru. On the site of the village once operated a lead melting-plant that featured a enormous pot with clear water, hence the name ‘La Caldera’, Spanish for ‘boiler’ or ‘cooking-pot’. The documented use of the name ‘La Caldera’ can be traced back to late sixteenth century title-deeds.

The property that is now the retreat-centre was purchased by the Anglican diocese of Northern Argentina in the 1970s. Since then, the centre has served local Anglican parishes mainly through youth-retreats and children’s camps. These activities have always been co-ordinated by the diocesan department of Clergy and Lay Training and over the years, hundreds of young people have been reached through this ministry. Much of today’s leadership and membership are the fruit of these camps and retreats. Currently the centre can offer accommodation to around 70 people, has hot and cold running water and the majority of sleeping facilities are bunk-beds in dorms.

In June 2007 the diocese saw a change of authority and Archbishop Greg Venables became diocesan Bishop in Northern Argentina. The new Bishop and his staff quickly perceived the need for optimising the use of the La Caldera centre and the project for modernisation was conceived. One of the priorities of the diocese is to become less dependent on donations from abroad and to increase the percentage of ministry-budgets they can finance themselves. Modernising the La Caldera retreat centre is part of this priority.

Phase A:

  • Construction of low front-wall with columns in style, closed with welded iron fence; hinged double gates for main entrance and hinged single gate for delivery entrance;
  • Fencing off the grounds with wire mesh and concrete posts ?(50% of circumference, + 400 meters);
  • Remodelling of two dorms and the construction of new bathrooms;
  • Repairs to existing bathrooms, roofs, floors and walls;
  • Painting the main building.
  • For more details of the project read the project description, and the team blog.

    Short term mission trips 2008

    During the coming months several SAMS Ireland teams are heading to South America. Each of them will be doing a variety of work to server the Anglican church in their outreach and ministries. The teams are:

    • Lisburn Cathederal – Salta; Red Box Project, from 28th June to 19th July. Team leader – Jonny Best.
    • Down & DromoreLa Caldera 2008, Northern Argentina; from 4th July to 25th July. Team leader – Stephen Trew.
    • Dungannon / Fivemiletown – Salta; Red Box Project, from 24th July to 15th August. Team Leader Jo Hamilton
    • Love For Life – Paraguay; From 1st August to 17th August. Team Leader Hannah Collins. Following up the Love for Life Paraguay 2007 trip (report).
    • Eglinton / AhoghillMission Paraguay 2008; From 1st August to 23rd August. Team Leader David Orritt.

    Friday Night Live 2008

    Friday Night LiveFour hundred and forty people squeezed into the main hall in the Jethro Centre for Friday Night Live; it was standing room only by 7:30pm. Highlights of the evening included a reunion between Edmeia Williams from Brazil and Archbishop Robin Eames. In 1998 Lord Eames visited Edmeia in the Dona Marta favela of Rio de Janerio.

    Retired Bishop of Paraguay, John Ellison and his wife Judy, shared about their 30 years of work in South America. Dr Dickie Barr reported on a successful Love for Life trip, and the Trews emotionally shared how the family moved from Paraguay back to Northern Ireland.

    Friday Night LiveThe dynamic evangelist and church leader from Chile, Alf Cooper, gave the keynote address on the need to share the gospel, and training all members of the church to be a witness for Christ. He also introduced Samuel Lago who is spending a year in All Saints Parish in Belfast.

    Titch and Cecilia reported on the excellent work carried out by SAMS volunteers in Salta and welcomed Pamela who is spending a year in Annaghmore Parish.

    Bishop Ken Clarke finished the evening by praying for all those who will be going on mission over the next year, including the nationals from South America working in Northern Ireland.

    It was another exciting night, encouraging to see so much interest in the work of mission in South America, Spain and Portugal. Thank you to all who helped out, and for everyone who came on such a wintry night.

    We’d love to hear your thoughts, leave a comment at the form at the bottom of this page.

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