These many years
The ministry of the “The Burning Bush” began in printed form in March 1970 when I was minister of Bethel Free Presbyterian Church, Enniskillen, in Co. Fermanagh. It sought to bear faithful testimony to the Word of God in this age of apostasy. Up until the end of 1998 the printed edition of “The Burning Bush” was distributed free. It relied solely upon gifts received from readers to carry on the witness. During this period we reached a circulation of 4800 per issue. But from January 1999, a subscription rate had to be set in order to regularise the finances of the publication.
The printed edition was terminated in February 2007 and the witness of “The Burning Bush” became exclusively internet based. The Lord has blessed the outreach of “The Burning Bush” over the years to many souls who have appreciated its clarion call to separation to the old paths of gospel truth and its forthright dealing with issues others side-stepped.
Kilskeery Free Presbyterian Church
From February 1978 until November 2008 I was the minister of Kilskeery Free Presbyterian Church, a congregation which was one of a number that sprang out of our gospel labours in Lisbellaw where the Free Presbyterian witness in Co. Fermanagh began in February 1967 and where it remained until it was re-sited to the newly build Bethel church building, in August 1972.
From 1978 until the final publication of it in February 2007, the ministry of “The Burning Bush” was based in Kilskeery.
Kilskeery is a little hamlet of some 20 houses, situated in very rural County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. As already mentioned, in 1967, God began to work in the village of Lisbellaw, about 12 miles from Kilskeery in County Fermanagh and a new Free Presbyterian witness was born. I was then the student minister in charge of that work. I was ordained to the gospel ministry and installed as minister of Lisbellaw (later called Bethel) Free Presbyterian Church in April 1968. People from Kilskeery travelled over to the Lord’s Day evening services and quite a number were converted and about ten families left the local ecumenical churches. Most of them left the Church of Ireland (Episcopalian).
In 1974, a new building was opened in Kilskeery to house the new Free Presbyterian outreach in the village. Regular Lord’s Day gospel services, Sabbath school, children’s meetings and prayer meetings were organised. In 1977, the outreach was constituted as a new congregation of the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster. It was one of four congregations that sprang from the meetings in Lisbellaw. A year later I moved to Kilskeery to become the minister.
“The Burning Bush” was started as a congregational newssheet because the local press were very opposed to our anti-ecumenical stance and refused to publish anything I said. Following the horrific IRA bombing in nearby Enniskillen on November 8, 1987, the “Poppy-Day Massacre”, when 11 Protestants were murdered and 65 injured by an IRA bomb planted in a Roman Catholic property near to the town’s war memorial, I wrote an exposure of the lies and ecumenical cover-up of the massacre. The Protestants were attending the annual wreath-laying ceremony, marking the end of the I and II World Wars. The demand for that publication resulted in 50,000 copies being circulated by Ulster Protestants to friends everywhere in the world. The interest generated prompted me to upgrade “The Burning Bush” to a newspaper-style publication to give the truth about what was really happening in our land.
From that time, we saw an increase in our readership throughout the world by the simple process of one believer telling another.
Now in retirement it is my desire to maintain something of the witness of years past and so “The Burning Bush” continues, in a limited fashion, to bear witness to the old paths wherein is the good way through archived articles and sermon recordings as well as some more recently added material.
May the Lord bless you through the written and audio material on this site.
Yours in Christ’s cause and covenant,