From Northern Ireland comes a beautiful and heartwarming story about how innovative initiatives by Evangelical Christians are changing lives.
The East Belfast Mission is a long established Methodist outreach. They set up the NI Street League – a football competition for those who are homeless or have a history of homelessness. This led to a team from the League participating in the Homeless World Cup in Chile last October. One young homeless man in the team, Padraig McKissock, who has not slept in a bed for two years, scored over 30 goals in that Homeless World Cup campaign.
Padraig has now signed for Bangor FC. Bangor are currently four points clear at the top of the Championship and on course for promotion to the NI Premier League for next season. This in no way represents a financial windfall for Padraig – Northern Irish soccer is poorly funded and Bangor’s players are amateurs – but it demonstrates how churches are learning to make practical differences to people’s lives.