You will see from the front page of the website that we have had a dreadful time at the temporary premises we had found at Vicarfield Road. We had so many break-ins and so much damage done that we had to close for over a month. Now we have been offered temporary accommodation at Shieldhall & Drumoyne United Free Church and move in there on Monday (17th Feb.) We are most grateful to the church for this kind offer and would ask you to pray that we can get settled in without too much trouble.
At Aboukir Street, our new building work has started and the existing building has now been demolished There is lots of activity on the site with containers in place for the workmen and ground works taking shape. It will be autumn time before we will be able to move in but time moves along so fast that it will not be long in coming round. Do pray that the work will progress without any interruptions and that we can get in when planned. I’ll try to put some pictures on this blog soon.
When planning our move away from Aboukir Street to let the building be pulled down, we thought we had a place settled to move to. As it turned out we would not have been able to do all our activities there and would have had problems with getting into the accommodation at night and weekends for our fellowship and youth clubs.
A chance conversation with a lady in my Church has ended with us being in an old nursery school at Vicarfield Street which meets all our needs and is perfect for our disabled friends as it is all on one level.
We had to be out of our premises with only one week of notice and really had no where to go. We have an outstanding team of staff who worked really hard to make sure everything was packed up and cleared out of Aboukir Street.
We even did the filtting ourselves with a hired van to save money. We were moved in and ready for action quickly but had to wait a bit longer for the necessary health and safety checks etc. It is just like home here now and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming to all – just what Preshal is about.
We can do all our usual activities although it is a bit smaller so it will be cosy for the winter. Our administrator Val is delighted as she has moved from a ships container to an office with 3 windows!!! and heaters – luxury indeed. Our kitchen staff are not so pleased as they have a mini kitchen and are working with 2 small cookers to provide a hot lunch 3 times a week so they are roasting.
The guys are over the moon at Vicarfield Street as they have a space to set up their recording studio and have been working on a Christian CD writing their own songs. We have also started a singing group which we will use when we are out sharing God’s love with others.
We would like to put out an appeal for anyone who is gifted and can help us on a volunteer basis to deliver activities to our clients for a couple of hours each week.
We have also started a Leroc class which is a lively dance class to keep fit and lift the spirits. I am even having a bash at it myself to keep the pounds at bay. My version of The Slosh has to be seen to be believed. You can feel free to come and join in on a Wednesday morning. It is a great thing to do on a dull winter’s morning with lots of laughter and as we all know, laughter is the best medicine.
Our lunch club is now running three days a week to cope with demand and this is probably a sign of the times. With the winter coming in fast, we have decided to run the third club on a Friday lunch time to tide those who need it most over the weekend.
I am just back from Inverness, Brora, Balintore and Rosskean and what a wonderful time we had sharing the Gospel. I am off to Stornoway on the 9th of November for about a week doing various meetings and a couple of radio programmes so please pray for opportunities and for the radio programmes, as this is a great opportunity to reach many people.
Many churches have been in touch with us to donate their harvest goods and offerings and this has been just fantastic. I would like to say a big, big thank you to all who have supported us in this way. It makes such a difference when we don’t have to buy tea, coffee, sugar and biscuits as this lowers our day to day running costs. You can just imagine how much tea and coffee we go through and those with addiction have a very sweet tooth so we are always filling up the sugar bowl.
As you know we have been busy over the past few years raising money for our capital appeal and people who have so generously donated to this will now see a new building rise from the dust once it settles in Aboukir Street. We need to keep our eye on what is important though and that is the people who come in each day. We are constantly raising money to keep our centre open for everyone but this has become harder due to both our capital appeal and the state of our economy. Everyone is feeling the pinch and we too are tightening our belts and saving where we can, so you can be sure that every penny you donate goes to those in need.
We are coming round to that time of year again as Christmas approaches. This is a very hard and difficult time for many of our folks and their families and we give out all the toys, selection boxes and groceries that we receive from our supporters. We do this so that those in need can give their families a special Christmas without going to money lenders and getting into debt. For many this is the only way they can borrow money and it sees them paying back huge interest so that they are saddled with these loans for such a long time. Here at Preshal we do our best to discourage this by helping everyone have a family Christmas with food, presents and we let them know that although gifts are nice to have, the greatest gift of all is God’s love.
On Wednesday 18th April 2012 a group of young people from East Renfrewshire Schools got together to raise money for Preshal and share their musical talents. They organised a concert hosted by Greenbank Church in Clarkston featuring these musical youngsters on a variety of instruments including Church Organ, French horn, Clarinet, Trumpet and much more. There were over 100 people at the concert and it raised a whopping £687 for The Preshal Trust. We would like to say a huge thank you to Luke, Andrew, Cameron, Chloe, Richard, Mark, Emily, Nicholas, Stuart, Christopher, Andrew and Hannah for sharing their time and music.
I have been busy as normal up and down the country speaking. They are far too many to mention. However I thank everyone who supports the work of Preshal.
Here are just a few:
The Congregational Church Women’s Rally made us their yearly project and as such I have got to know the ladies and I must say what a bunch of hard working wonderful servants of the Lord they are. A big thank you for your kind donation of £2,277.00. God Bless You All in your service for Him.
I am just back from Stornoway and I am blown away with the support that we get from so many people in Stornoway. The High Church of Scotland had a lunch day to raise funds for Preshal which Chris Martin had organised. Again and again I see the tremendous hard work that the women do in the Church. The lunch day was full to capacity and with a lot of chatter in the background.
When we have our intergenerational week to break down the barriers between our young people and adults, the High Church supplies home baking, three course Sunday lunch and a lot of additional support from individuals in the congregation.
We will be returning to Scaladale on the 2nd August with our Early Intervention group and our adults. Watch this space and, if you’re near, drop in and see us. The kettle is always on the boil.
I must say we have a wonderful friend who is closer than a brother, Yes Donald Martin, you know it’s you. Donald and his family are always working tirelessly on our behalf. Keep up the good work. Ps get that café opened to feed our lot. They are looking forward to dining out in style.
For the past 15 weeks the adults have been learning Guitar, Drums, bass and vocals. They have all achieved their first ever Showcase where they entertained their peers in the Preshal. I asked what will you call your new band and they decided to call themselves THE BENEFITS, as they are all currently receiving Job Seekers allowance!
Here in his own words to tell you about it is Wilson who is the lead singer of the Benefits:
“Doing a concert was a challenging experience for me as I have never done anything like that before, but seeing the crowd enjoying themselves gave me buzz and I can’t wait to learn more songs. My confidence and self-esteem has increased with all the positive feedback from everyone. I know that the other band members feel the same and that we are proud of our achievement.” Wilson Martin
The Sunday Evening Fellowship is going well with new people joining in our worship.
Triumphal Entry was one of the talks that we discussed. Many questions were asked and, of course, Preshal being Preshal, one of our people asked the question, “What was the name of the donkey that Jesus was on when He entered into Jerusalem?”. Answers on a post card, please!
Another week, the speaker mentioned that “many are called, but few are chosen” and a new comer said you are dead right, the Rev. I M Jolly used to say that “Many are cold, but a few are frozen”. I said “You are correct. Many are frozen, frozen in their faith, that is, and they need the warmth of the Lord to melt them to reach other people.”
We have also being working with Stevenson High Church with the Rev Scott Cameron and his prayer group. The Preshal Fellowship has been joining them for prayer in order to reach out into the community. Please pray for Scott and the others for the vision God has given them.
We have also been blessed not only in numbers, but with the Preshal Praise band. A BIG thank you to all the visitors who drop in. This encourages us – and love to see you.
A big thank you goes to everyone who donated Easter Eggs it was much appreciated and over 400 families benefited from your kind generosity. Well done!
Ireland was truly blessed when a large group from The Preshal Punters turned up last month. They did not know what had hit them! All joking aside, this was a time of Spiritual and Team building, equipping the team to deal with the many challenges and hard work that are lying ahead.
We stayed at Tullyarvan Mill Community, Cultural & Hostel Centre, Buncrana, Co. Donegal, Ireland. The hospitality was second to none. The staff at Tullyyarvan gave us a great big welcome as they have got to know us over the years. I think they are becoming Preshaler’s , but we still need to pay our way as they are also a charity.
Willie, our bus driver, was fantastic and he even joined in with all our activities and fellowship meetings. A big thanks to our Willie and he will stay in touch as he has promised to come and visit us at Preshal.
Our Irish friends were superb as usual; the relationship the Preshal people have with our Irish friends goes deeper than friendship, and we are like one big happy family.
Since my last blog we continue to help others through the feeding programme. The need however has increased and we struggle to meet the demands. Please pray that God will continue to meet these needs within our community.