This is the official blogspot of Mannafest - a monthly youth event in Belfast run by Youth for Christ (NI). Feel free to read our blogs and leave us a line!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The future

We have decided to stop Mannafest. There are so many other youth events out there that we have just become another choice. Mannafest paved the way for youth events for the past 20 years and we are proud of what we achieved. We wanted to get back home to the Ulster Hall, but with financial difficulties we can't afford to put on this monthly event. If you have any comments or advise then please drop us a line

Thursday, May 14, 2009


A great night of PARTNERSHIP between 2 organisations who value MISSION. What did you think of Clare's talk? Did you come as a sailor or a pirate?

Would you like to help out with OM of YFC?

Monday, April 06, 2009


So what did people think of the DJ playing the whole way thru the talk?

Did you put on the blind fold?

Did you like the glow sticks?

What about Reedstar and their choice of songs?


(from l to r: Rick Hill, Jill Boyd, Mark Charles, Andrew Frame, Charlie Knox, Glenn Jordan)

A great morning with Glenn. Better be careful what is disclosed here!

So, who is Jesus? More angular, not domesticated, a brilliant reader of people and a great teller of stories.

We moved into discussion around different denominations and focussed a lot of contemporary worship songs. Something that stood out was the fact that with age, the individual looks for different elements in their faith. One can focus on and value preaching, singing, fellowship and evangelism at different stages of life.

Some advise on communication:
  1. we need to be more economical with our words
  2. the practise of writing a script can be helpful in preparation and delivery
  3. leave space for the Holy Spirit to apply
  4. the Bible is not an answer book
  5. the job of a communicator is to help people get into the story
  6. prepare together - have a community reading and preach on the same topic
  7. dont be afraid to ask questions of text outside your comfort zone
  8. read widely - outside your comfort zone and tradition
  9. look into Jewish writers for background and context material

Thursday, March 19, 2009


What did people think of the 2 styles of bands? And what about Bibleman and the Undertaker!


(From l to r: Katrina Patterson, Mark Charles, Katie Steiger, Neville Gibson, Rachel Sheppard, Nicole from California!, Andrew Frame, Bill Holloway and Dave Currie just left!)

So Bill came back to talk about personal devotions. We looked at Exodus 3 and tried to find some biblical principles. What is God doing in this passage?

Speaking, revealing Himself, responding to a need, promising, calling, working out His purposes

What is Moses doing?

obeying, listening, hiding

Throughout the Bible we are taught about personal devotions. In Genesis we read about 2 trees in the garden of eden that represent depedence on God and independence. In Luke 4 we read of Jesus being tempted to turn the stones into bread, or act independently from God. John 15 talks about us abiding and remaining in God.

So after looking at what the Bible teaches we looked at how to. Bill used a precepts model - looking, thinking, applying.

I guess the main point was that personal devotions can come out of a legalistic lifestyle, driven by guilt but it needs to coem from a love for God and Bill continually said
"it's all about relationship"

check out this

Monday, January 12, 2009

New year*New venue*New Format*

So we are trying to move away from the old youth service format of praise for 20/25 mins - speaker for 30mins - response time and worship time for another 30 mins. Mannafest has shaped the way for youth service but we believe it needs to change.

Look at the way TV programmes are - 5min magazine shows. Attention span is short. Education has changed the layout of the classroom to enhance pupil development, yet we are still sitting in our stalls, listening to one person speak for 30mins. Church goers are very polite - they just sit and listen, or maybe they just sit....

Can an event transform peoples lives? Does it just create emotional junkies, looking for a monthly high? Do events like Mannafest help or hinder the local church?

So what did you think of having an hour interactive programme? Did you notice any difference?

And what about the new venue? Parking easier? Nice cafe on site?

Sunday, December 14, 2008


What did you think about the Christmas Carols at the start?
What about the persecuted church section and that girl singing?
What about Rick Hill's talk?

Thanks to those who came long and missed the X-Factor final!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

December MANNA

Back row from l to r: Andrew Frame, Billy Fyffe, Rick Hill, Neville Gibson, Rachel Sheppard

Front row: Jill Boyd, Katrina Patterson, Heather Morris

Heather started by describing Jesus as someone who she could trust. She went on to share some of her story in why she should, could, did and does trust Jesus. Heather recommended Henri Nouwens book "The Wounded Healer"

Heather give us some really good advice about the purpose of teaching.

  1. Telling the story of God - loving the Bible, living the story, decide what not to teach
  2. Proclaiming truth about God
  3. Preaching as an event - allowing God to meet His people

Other books Heather recommended were Mike Greaves "Fully alive preacher" and a Donald English book called "Noticing transcendence in the midst" (i think!)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Did anyone sign up for Fast4Africa?

What did you think about our 3 options of where to go, venue wise - stay in Spires, The Crescent or option 3 - gingerfield...i mean Orangefield!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

November MANNA

Back row: Neville Gibson, Dave Currie, David Dunlop, Jonny Farrell, Neil Armstrong, Andrew Frame.

Front row: Rick Hill, Katrina Patterson, Laura Blakley, Katie Steiger.

A great morning with 'wee dee' aka Jack Bauer!

we focussed in on communicating and David gave some handouts out...which i will upload when I get them. A lot of new faces this morning, which was great to see, lettuce pray they get up next month!

Congratulations to Dave Currie who had baby girl #2 - Hannah

And to Rick Hill who got engaged to the lovely Sarah!

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Any comments on the Yone commissioning? It was great to see everyone up praying over these young people who are taking a year out so please continue to pray for them?

What did people think of Steve's talk on the Great Commission? Remember Jesus told people to go, those who doubted and those who worshipped, and Jesus promised to be with us no matter our state

Thursday, September 18, 2008


So what did People think of our new band REEDSTAR? There was also the more interactive talk from Gav. And any thoughts on PROJECT 32?

September MANNA

So the first MANNA of a new year seen Gordon McDade join us. So much good stuff. Questions Gordon put to us:

  1. What am I learning?
  2. What do I want to learn next?
  3. Who am I mentoring?
  4. How does my lifes authenticity validate my message?

This last question was what we focussed in on. Gordon said that it was important we look at our:

  1. Conversion
  2. Call
  3. Character
  4. Contribution

We can work on our character by:

  1. Reading alot (esp biographies, not just of christians)
  2. Confessing
  3. Reflecting
  4. Being Mentored
  5. Self leadership

Gordon also siad that in years gone by he always had at the top of his talks/sermons - AIM. What is my main point? We also need to answer the 'SO WHAT?' question in our application, so we just don't impart information but we look to transform lives thru the Holy Spirit.

2 other interesting conversations looked at 'inappropriate self disclosure' and ' stewardship of influence'.

A lot of info to stew over. Thanx Gordon and for all who attended (Charlie Knox, Jill Boyd, Andrew Frame, Rick Hill, Dave Currie and Katrina Patterson)

Monday, June 16, 2008

June Mannafest

We had a great night with Paul Flavel and Kate John from British YFC. Also Tom, Hannah and Simeon were with us as well.

Any questions to ASK TOM?

Any comments on the night?

Sunday, June 15, 2008


We asked Adrian Eagleson 'Who is God to you?'

Adrian had 3 answers. 2 immediate and 1 long term experience of God. Firstly, God is JEHOVAH JIREH. Secondly God has been his advocate. And thirdly, and most interestingly, God is his cloud.

Now before you think Eagie has lost it and got his head in the clouds, its not a Care Bear thing, but its about the story in Exodus 13. The children of Israel followed God by cloud during the day and fire by night. A great image of who God is. We need to trust and obey God. Life is a journey with God. Wherever God is moving we will follow!

Adrian also threw in some gems:

  1. Be like a busdriver - people get on and get off in your life, but be nice to them as they might get back on sometime
  2. We need to know God, we don't need to understand God
  3. Learn to swim in different rivers, different strokes
  4. Look after your core (physically and spiritually)

Adrian encouraged us to look after our INSCAPE. He described it by using a triangle. We need to know God. We need to know our roots. We need to know our purpose.

One question that Adrian asked of us:

  1. How are we teaching young people to engage in all areas of life?

Handling money, dealing with the first night in Uni, cooking. Yes we need to address their spiritual being and their soul, but what about their skills, knowledge and experience, their life skills. Ponder!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Following on from David Stanfields comments about 'balance' not being a biblical term or even a spiritual concept, I came across this section written by Mike Yaconelli (page90)

"Balance is a cherised value in modern society. Balance means that there are no extremes....Balance is a condition of neutrality, where the middle is considered desirable and healthy. When someone is described as balanced it is understood as a compliment...blanced describes a person who moderates all aspects of their life, physical, mental, social and spiritual....balance sounds like a characteristic of the christian faith...

Beware of balance!

...it is silently destructive, crushing the unbalance of giftedness, taming the extremes of passion, snuffing out the raging fire of a genuine relationship with Jesus."

I suppose that fits to what it says in Revelation 3v15,

"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot, I wish you were either one of the other. SO cos you are lukewarm (balanced?) I am about to spit you out of my mouth."


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Yahweh Shalom

So Dave Currie, sorr professor David Currie told us that even though we had been looking at names of God in the Old Testament, the correct Hebrew is not Jehovah but Yahweh.

SO dave spoke of Yahweh Shalom and taught us how to write in Hebrew. Cool!

  1. What worries do you have in your life?
  2. What questions do you have?
  3. Do you know that God is in it?
  4. Do you know God wants to bring wholeness to your life?

The Lord is our peace

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Last Gig

Anyone want to leave comments about Bluetree?

We have loved the 3 year journey with these guys. They are mad, up for it, love wrestling and waterfights. They love God and love leading people in praise and worship.

As Aaron said on Saturday night "Your relationship with God is as dangerous as you want to make it!"

Greater things boys!

Cos we're so happy!!!

May Manna

Just back from our honeymoon on the Friday and up on Saturday morning for MANNA - hard core! Joining us were: Nicky Blair, Andrew Frame, Dave Currie, Charlie Knox, Rick Hill, Katrina Patterson and Bill Holloway.

I keep forgetting my camera so I have picked a picture what sums up the theme of the morning.

Bill started with an icebreaker which took the whole session! We were meant to look at 'Who we are?' and then 'Who God is?' but didnt get anywhere near the second part.

This was probably the most interactive and intense morning we have had. Might be something to do with the bright sunny morning compared to the dark, cold, wet mornings....anyway

#1 - Are you saved?

#2 - Are you sure you are saved?

So we didn't get passed these 2 questions. It was great tho. We looked at what the word 'saved' actually means. It is more than life after death. There is redemption. There is atonement. Needless to say at 730 in the am it got interesting.

Then we gave different opinions of assurance of salvation. On one side you have people who believe you can lose your salvation and on the other side you have 'once saved, always saved.'

Being saved is more than a one off experience. Sanctification comes into play as well, as an ongoing process, on a daily basis, it is about a way of thinking, learning to change to think like Jesus.

Any comments?

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Lord of Hosts

Jill Boyd spoek about the Lord of hosts.
Do you want to be in God's army?
Will you stand and march with the army of God?

Saturday, April 12, 2008

April Manna

So apparently there are 3 main parts to a boat:

  1. the deck
  2. the hull
  3. the sails

this can be compared to 3 main parts to our life:

  1. our public life
  2. our private life
  3. our spiritual life

Integrity is about having these 3 areas as close together as possible.

David and Mairisine Stanfield came to us this morning and they were both so good we probably should have had them on separate occassions. BUT, it is so good seeing and hearing them work together and off each other.

Mairisine started off explaining who God is to her - sovereign. Even through her illness, pain and isolation she still sees God as sovereign. She believes ministry can become idolatrous, as we can focus on pleasing people. She said she believes the church has lost its theology of suffering.

Concerning leadership we talked about how you need to understand who you are. Ask yourself the question 'What part do you play in the body?'

1 Timothy 4 v12-16

  • we need to set example
  • don't neglect your gift
  • weakness helps dependance
  • independance aint biblical

David went on to say how balance isn't biblical either. Jesus told us to take up our cross, deny ourselves and follow him - aint no balance there!

Attending we had; Clare Woodward, Charlie Knox, Andrew Frame, Jill Boyd and Nicky Blair.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Creator God

God wants to work around us, in us and through us.

Anyone any stories about these areas?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Jehovah Melekh

Any stories of you knowing God as King in all areas of your life?

February Manna

(From l to r: Rick Hill, Katrina Boucher, Jill Boyd, Dave Currie, Phil Emerson, Laura Blakley, Andrew Frame, Clare Woodward, Lisa McPherson)

Quite a powerful morning with Phil Emerson. It still amazes me that people get up this early! It is getting easier as we have go tthru the cold, dark, wet winter mornings. It's interesting that we don't open with a prayer, or sing a closing hymn, we just sit and share and have some breakfast together - emerging church or what!!!?

Phil gave us a couple of real gems. He shared his heart and his lifes experiences and we were captivated. There wasn't so much of a discussion this morning as we just soaked it all in and Phil is a wise man.

We talked about blogging actually and Phil warned us to be carfeul with what we share in our blogs, so I even feel bad writing this! But its interesting how we are in an age of blogging our inner most feelings to the world, whether it be on BEBO, FACEBOOK, MYSPACE or the world o blogs.

Phil shared with us about the importance of solitude balanced with spending time with people. He writes to God every morning and finds it easier to write than pray out loud or into himself, but I suppose prayer can be writing! Phil would normally start in January and read from Genesis 1, Psalm 1, Matthew 1 and Acts 1. This year he has just focussed on the gospels.

Some more thoughts:

As responsibility rises, relationships suffer. Rev 2 v1-8 talks about how the Church in Ephesus grew but they lost their first love.

We never ask each other "how do you feel?" - its always, "so what you been doing?" or "how ae things going?"

Dying for God would be easy - live for God is hard!

Keep short accounts! Both financially and spiritually

Speak for people who don' t have a voice

Be real

Be honest

Don't admit to having all the answers

Wee things bite you not big things - I have never known an elephant to bite you! You are normally stung by a bee or a wasp.

We looked again at giftings (as brought up by Steve Cave in Dec 07). Bill Hybels talks about having 3 main giftings. Your main gifting gives you a buzz and energises you. Second one you enjoy doing. Third gift you will get tired quickly if you do it too much.

Phil finished off by sharing from Isaiah 40v31 and compared it to life. They that wait on the Lord will first of all rise on the wings of eagles. Secondly they will run. Lastly they will walk. So the enthusiasm dies but its all about how you finish the race. Run with perseverance!

Friday, January 18, 2008

January Manna

Unfortunately Alan couldn't make this MANNA and with exams on and it being really dark and cold, we didn't have MANNA. Alan however did send thru some notes to read.

As Jesus concludes, he wants to speak about the kind of service that he rejects. Remembering that this is probably the first teaching that Jesus gave to his Disciples after he called them to be Apostles, it is important that these first Apostles understood that not all service is acceptable to him.

When Jesus began the Sermon on the Mount, he began by talking about Beatitude people, those who were broken and dependent solely upon him for life. Jesus concludes his sermon by describing those who have moved away from being broken dependant people, to those who are self-assured and self- sufficient.

In Christian ministry it is very easy to make this shift and not even notice it. Sometimes our service is a waste of time, it has no value. It may appear to be successful or effective but success or effectiveness is not evidences of acceptance or approval by God.

"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!' Matthew 7:21-23.

Hiding behind spiritual language.

Look how these people addressed Jesus. “Lord, Lord.” The use of repetition in scripture usually is to bring forth emphasis. Repetition in addressing another person is only used about fifteen times in the Bible and it always brings out personal intimacy. When the angel intervened and prevented Abraham from sacrificing Isaac, the Lord said "Abraham, Abraham."

When God called Moses at the burning bush, He addressed him, "Moses, Moses."

When one of Jesus' dear friends Mary, sat at His feet while her sister, another dear friend, toiled to prepare a meal and complained to the Lord, He responded "Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things."

Before He was crucified, Jesus said to Peter, "Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you (all of you) like wheat. But I have prayed for you.”

The way these people addressed Jesus at this time was consistent with how they always used spiritual language. Often people can develop a whole new sub-language in an attempt to hide what is really going on in their hearts. They way these people addressed Jesus had the appearance of intimacy, but in reality is was words without substance. Jesus was able to see past their words.


There is an important dynamic at work in this passage that we need to grasp if we are going to understand what Jesus is teaching here.

Jesus tells us "Many will say to me on that day Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' The reason why these people spoke about their ministry was because that what was in their hearts, and what they lived for. When we stand before Jesus, what we lived for will be revealed.

Many will say Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?'

Others will say, ‘did we not raise a family in your name?’

‘Did we not work hard and earn money to provide the best materially for my family in your name?’ ‘Did we not serve the church in your name?’

In other words, what we lived for, and what we did not live for shall be revealed.

As we work through this passage, we need to put our life source into this verse, and realise that if we have the wrong life source, then the response of Jesus to us will be the same, ‘I do not know you.’

Being known by God is more important than serving God.

Being known by God is more important than service, even if we do it in Jesus' name.

Look how these people introduced themselves. They did not talk about their relationship with Jesus, they did not say how pleased they were to see the Lord. No there whole focus was on what they were doing, as if Jesus would be impressed. Their ministry had become their life.

We need to unpack what these people are saying when they say 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles.’ This was a spontaneous statement, which blows the whistle on where these people were. They could no longer hide. They could no longer hide what was really in their hearts. They were saying to Jesus

“ For me life equals ministry.”

How they effected other people's lives was more important than what God was doing in their life.

Power for ministry was more important than intimacy in fellowship.

Spiritual maturity was measured by success in ministry rather than fruitful characters.

If we think that life is about what we do, then according to this passage we are false prophets; we are not the real thing. We conveniently associate a false prophet with what they teach. However, Jesus goes a lot deeper, he says that if anyone thinks that their life is more valuable, more useful, more important because of what they are doing, then they are false.

Jesus is very clear in what he says. ‘MANY will say to me on that day, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles.’ Most of us fall into this trap, we congratulate ourselves, and we think how wonderful we are, for we have served the Lord.

However, when we stand before the Lord, our service should be the last thing in our minds. Finding life and value in your service is an indication of being false. Finding life and value in anything, no matter how good or respectable it may be, is an indication of being false, according to this passage.

What kind of person would never say these words? What kind of person would never try and impress Jesus with their ministry? Someone who understands Kingdom life, a Beatitude person.

Often people fall into the trap of confusing ministry with being spiritual. They believe that because they are involved in some kind of ministry then they must be all right. Yet, many people get involved in a ministry to meet needs within them as they may have a hidden agenda. If you were to take their ministry away from them, their whole life would fall apart, for their ministry has taken the place of God in their lives.

Sometimes we need to ask God to take our ministry from us so that we can find Him. Those who have a fear of loosing their ministry, are the people who need to loose it.

You can be involved in ministry for God, and yet not be known by God.

Jesus said "I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you."

When Jesus said these words, He spoke words that sounded familiar to His Jewish audience – especially to the Rabbis and their students.

The Jewish writings tell us of a time when a student said or did something wrong, a very scholarly Rabbi said to him, "I never knew you." Upon saying that he did not speak to the student for a period of 30 days. He gave his student the silent treatment, the cold shoulder.

Now note what Jesus did not say. He didn’t say “you never knew me” but “I never knew you. Surely Jesus is God, surely he knows all things, so how can he say that He doesn’t know us?

When Jesus says ‘I will tell them plainly’, he uses a very strong word, which means to confess, or give thanks. What Jesus says here is an honest assessment of our relationship with him.

What does it mean for God not to know us?

Surely God is Omniscient, so how can he say to these people, “I never knew you.” He is not saying “I know nothing about you.” We all know certain things about others but we don’t know them in a personal way. Jesus is saying to these people who have found their life in their ministry, “You have never really opened up your heart to me.”

What kind of person finds it difficult to open up and become completely vulnerable? The person who is not broken, who is not poor in spirit. If God does not know us, it is our fault. We must be totally honest and open before him.

Lack of Worship prevents God from knowing us.

It is interesting to notice what these people did not say. There were no expressions of gratitude, joy or worship, and their whole emphasis was on what they were doing. ‘Did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles,’

When the emphasis of our lives is on what we do, worship becomes unlikely.

These people were guilty of sanitised idolatry. When a person struggles with worship, that struggle is always the consequences of idolatry. If we have a heart that is looking for life outside of Jesus, we are going to find some reason to justify our lack of worship.

These people could not worship Jesus when they met him face to face, because they never worshipped him before they met him. If worship is not a priority in this life, then it will not be a priority in the 'next life.'

This passage redefines the will of God for our lives.

"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

God's will is that he knows us.

God's will is that worship must always take the priority over ministry.

God's will is that we remove all our sheep’s clothing.

God's will is that we be honest open people, with no hidden agenda.

How will Jesus respond to these people? He says that they are evildoers. What makes the deeds (both good and evil ones) "lawless" is not disobedience to some law (the Pharisees worked hard to obey all the laws), but what is in the heart i.e. the motivations for those actions. Ministry that is not a reflection of our fellowship with God is unacceptable, even if it appears to be effective.

Some questions we need to ask

Are we satisfied with our relationship with God in the present?

Are we looking for life in something, rather in having an intimate experience of God?

What idol has robbed us of our passion for God?

Has worship ceased to be a priority in our lives?

Can we identify some of the sheep’s clothing we have been wearing?

Some Practical steps we must take in order to open our lives up more to God.

We need to pray differently about ourselves. Can you identify an attitude or a motive in your heart you have never prayed about? We are inclined to pray about external things. God will only know us when we open our hearts to him.

Is there anything in your life that has become a source of life or identity? Maybe you think if I loose this ministry, or if I loose this job, or family, life for me would be pointless. We need God to change our attitudes to these things. When Jesus becomes our only reason for living, then we have the freedom to enjoy these other things.

We need God to teach us the importance of worship. False prophets cannot take the worship of Jesus seriously. If we do not understand the importance of worship, then we need to ask some serious questions about what is in our hearts.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

December Manna

(from l to r: Rick Hill, Steve Cave, Charlie, Dave Currie, Jill Boyd, Gavin Robinson)

When asked 'Who is God?', Steve said you had to look at the person, Jesus. Jesus has been turned into a theological argument. Jesus came to show us what God is like. This was really interesting as each speaker had started to talk about God and finished off with Jesus. Every time I was listening to a talk I was like, "Keep that for next year! We will talk about Jesus next year! This year we are meant to be focusing on God the Father...", so my bad!

Steve went on to comment on a book by John Humphreys " In God we doubt" which is confessions of a failed atheist or angry agnostic. Anyway it talks about how there must be something more than heaven. In John 17 v3 the Bible says that 'eternal life is knowing God', so we went on to discuss 'what is the gospel?'

Probably the biggest point Steve brought to the group was about leadership. He said he had made some mistakes so encouraged us to ask ourselves these questions which he did not:

  1. Are you totally sure of who you are?
  2. What are my gifts?
  3. Am i prepared for whatever role i have?
In order to be in leadership we need to have the highest integrity. Steve encouraged us to discover our strengths. What stayed with me was that Steve admitted to being competitive - something which I am or have. This can be used as a positive in that it will drive you and you wont burn out.

The foundations of what we do have to be GRACE and TRUTH.

Another book Steve encouraged us to read was Andy Stanley's 'Choosing to cheat' - check this out!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jehovah Nissi

Any stories of you knowing victory in your battles, as you raise up the Lord as your banner?

Friday, December 07, 2007

November Manna

From l to r: Katrina Boucher, Clare Woodward, IrRev. Nicky Blair, Laura Blakley, Gavin Robinson, Jill Boyd and Dr Alistair McCracken (Dave Currie, Charlie Knox and Andrew Frame had just left!)

An interesting morning which looked at God as Creator yet the marginalsied can't see this. Alistairs big passion is for children's work and while most of us are youth workers we kinda simplify childrens work. Al believes some sunday school teachers don't teach good theology. Our expectations are low and we should ask ourselves and the children - "What do we hope to achieve this morning?"

Al encouraged us to read the Bible stories and ask "how do you respond to the story?". We need to engage with the Bible and allow space for our children and young people to engage with the Bible.

This also led to us asking if some adults remain with children's theology??

We need to be trainers rather than teachers, in that we help people explore. A lot of youth don't really know the God they are praising. So the warning comes from Isaiah 29:

These people honour me with their lips but their hearts are far from me

Al encouraged us t read a book called 'Reading the Bible with the damned' check out this link.

Another book was Eugene Petersons practical theology 'Eat this book'

I shall finish where Al started: Would you like to have met Jesus?' - discuss!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Jehovah Jireh

Any stories on the Lord providing for you?

Monday, October 15, 2007

Better way to pray

Jill Boyd has recommended this book to us by Andrew Wommack. It's kinda self explanatory! Check out this link

October Manna

(From left to right: Laura Blakley, Jill Boyd, Gavin Robinson, Andi Oakes, Andy Frame, Dave Currie, Nicky Blair and Charlie Knox)

Rick Hill had just left as he flew down from the North Coast and had to fly back up again, as he was on a weekend. Big Charlie was taking it easy as he was speaking at Mannafest, and there were other apologies which I don't need to get into.

I was up from just after 5am. I had dreamt during the week that I had missed MANNA by sleeping in and by out trying on wedding outfits...anyway...I didn't miss MANNA and again it was great. Something happens when you get up early. You normally have an afternoon nap!

Andi Oakes came up from Lurgan with his guitar and shared his life and his heart with us. Andi explained how God wants to work on our character thru bringing along different experiences. Andi shared how God has been working in him for the past 18 months in particular. God will break us periodically. Being broken aint a nice thing to happen, but its essential. In answering the questions, 'Who is God?' Andi simply said "daddy". He continued that we always try to be intellectual about God, which very often ends in pride and arrogance.

Out conversation came back to the local church. Andi said that the church needs to be untidy with elastic walls, cos we all experience God in different ways. We compared the church to having similar elements to communism and facism - which was really interesting and provoking - something we want MANNA to be.

It continued on very much from last month where we talked about reshaping the local church. We don't want to move away from church and there is a real need for 3 things: community, developing leaders and one more which I can't remember (maybe Charlie will remind me!)

September 07

Alain decided to go for the away norn iron top instead of the irish rugby top!

To read Alain's talk click here or to listen to Alain's talk on 'Who is God?' click here

We really appreciate Alain sharing his heart with us, and as you will read or listen to, we were challenged to join in the 'eternal dance' of exploring who God is. It's a journey....

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Jehovah Rapha

Anyone any stories of the Lord being their healer?

Physical, spiritual, mental, emotional

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Early in the morning....

(back row: Mark Charles, Charlie Knox, Rick Hill, Dave Currie, Paul Reid)
(front row: Priscilla Reid, Jill Boyd, Rick Preston)

We don't look that bad for 7am, well this was probably nearer to 9am! Paul and Priscilla Reid joined us for an amzing time. I wasn't too sure what it would hold and normally when you chair a meeting you can never relax or listen but this flowed.

We covered areas like the 'otherness of God' - which is a beautiful picture of the mystery of God. Paul explained that we experience God in 4 ways:
  1. Public (big event)
  2. Social (sunday service)
  3. Friendship (life)
  4. Intimacy

Paul went onto explainthat we also experience others in the same way. With Mannafest being a big event we got to hit the 80% straight down the line - just give it to them straight. If you want to go deeper, Mannafest aint the place to do it. But instead of making Mannafest another church, Paul encouraged us to reshape the church by pushing people back into their local churches. We also need to serve and resource the local church. So we agreed that as Mannafest speakers, and general youth workers, that we wanted to inspire young people to get involved in their church. We also pointed out that the older generation need to give permission.

We also asked the question of God, "Where do you want me to invest?" I think it is important that as we are invested into then we look to pass it on. Priscilla said that we would get more out of this, the more we put in, the more we get out. The role of the mentoree is one of hard work.

We don't want this group to become elist and exclusive so if you would like to come along it is the second Saturday every month form 7am to 9am in Manley House, YFCNI Offices. From this pool we will ask people to speak at Mannafest.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Mother Teresa

Some quotes to think about:

"We can admire and worship Jesus without actually doing what he did. We can applaud what he preached and stood for without caring about the same things. We can adore his cross without taking up ours"

"We can do no great things just small things with great love. It is not about how much you do but how much love you put into doing it"

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

7 Pathways

In chapter 7 of John Ortberg's book "God is closer than you think" he talks or writes about how our individual uniqueness means we will all experience God’s presence and learn to relate to God in different ways. However we have to recognise our need to stretch in certain areas that don’t come naturally to us.

So the 7 pathways are:

  1. Intellectual
  2. Relational
  3. Serving
  4. Worship
  5. Activist
  6. Contemplative
  7. Creation

I think it is good to be aware of how and why we experience God, but it is important to realise that we can't put God in a box. Very often we experience God up the mountains, then we expect to meet God every time we go up the mountain, and it has to be that particular mountain - so its become about us rather than God.

I also think it is good to be aware of how other people experience God. So in particular with Mannafest, we will be trying to cover all the bases, so to speak in our programme. In any youth event or church service we kinda all do the same thing, which doesn't suit everyone. We expect people to grow by "reading their Bibles and praying everyday" and thats it! But if you don't like reading or can't read them you're not in much luck! What happened before the printing press? What did people do for the 'Quiet times'??? Then you have the hymn/prayer sandwich on sundays. But what happens if you can't sing and wont sing? For having a creative God, we are not very creative!!

Thursday, August 23, 2007


We are going to introduce something new to Mannafest - and its called MANNA - original eh?

Basically I have contacted a number of younger adults to speak at Mannafest. Some have disagreed with me moving away from big name speakers, but to be honest there are a lot of Christian comedians or storytellers out there. When I prayed about speakers for MANNAFEST the criteria was people who had a heart for God, a heart for young people, and people who were passionate about communicating God's word to young people. I am not saying that older people are not relevant in speaking to young people any more, far from it, but I thought these mentors would be pumped at exploring this new opportunity and passing their wisdom, knowledge, experience and heart on to people just starting out in ministry.


Titus 2 v1-8 says:

You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be
temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and
in endurance.

Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in
the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach
what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and
children, 5to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and
to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In
everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show
integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that
those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about

‘MANNA’ will take place on the same morning as MANNAFEST, the 2nd Saturday of every month. It will be informal, hopefully around a breakfast table, and a chance to talk and ask questions - we don't want any death by powerpoint services!

I think YFC will have a role in developing this initial idea into a more general SUMMIT type ministry, where people involved in ministry come together to share and learn fom one another.

At the minute I am focussed on investing into the lives of the people who will speak at MANNAFEST. I don't want this to become an exclusive elitist group. I believe in evolving ideas. So if you would like to join either the mentoring or speaking team then leave me a comment or contact me. We give out so much, but are we receiving. We need to give out of the overflow. We need to daily receive from God, in order that we can give to others.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The blog is back!

We are going to be using the blog a lot more now, so will try to keep it up to date

Over the next three years we will be exploring 'WHO IS GOD?'

Year One - God the Father - looking in particular at names of Jehovah

Year Two - God the Son - in particular the 7 sayings of Jesus in John's gospel

Year Three - God the Holy Spirit - something/one which a lot of denominations ignore

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Well, the mannafest blog on blogger.com is closing .
We have decided that you guys are all using our new fantastic bebo site and there is no need to have a separate blog.

The new site is http://mannafestbelfast.bebo.com.

Why not join us as a friend, check out the latest news, pics and more.

See you there.

Friday, June 16, 2006


Please note the Mannafest Slot @ U+1 is form 5:30 - 7:oo pm NOT 6:00 - 7:30 pm


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

THE BIG EVENT U+1 - Directions

U+1 - IT'S FINALLY HERE Can you believe it, the big finale to the year is here. All of us at Mannafest are really excited about this Saturday, as i hope you are. We are in the middle of sorting out last minute preparations and putting the programme for our slot in place. On the day we will be on stage from 5:30 - 7:00 pm, where we will do our Mannafest thing. We will of course have the wonderful Bluetree and Axiom, as well as some of you guys helping out on stage, in the form of Dancers and some people up sharing their stories. It's going to be great!!!!!

For those of you who are still asking the question Where on earth is Moira? and How do i get there? Please find below some maps, showing you where Moira is, but also where abouts the Event is when you get there.
If you are arriving by car you shouldn't have a problem as it will all be signposted, but for those of you coming by train or bus, click on this link www.translink.co.uk to get the times of the trains and buses, then see directions below of where to go
once you get off your mode of transport .

Once you get of the train, you are about 1/4 mile away from the venue. Follow the direction of the road on the map, heading towards Moira centre. Moira Demense is on the right hand side. Will all be signposted.

The bus usually lets you off in the town centre, follow the sign towards motorway, Moira Demense is on the left hand side heading back this way. It should all be signposted anyway.

Hope this all helps.

Can't wait to see all you guys

God Bless
Mannafest Team

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Well, what another amazing night.
God is doing great things in the lives of so many young people. I am sure you will agree.
How great it is to hear young people share their story, to hear how God is moving and challenging us. We need more of this. I really want to encourage all of you guys who come to Mannafest to think about sharing your story. God wants to use what each one of us has experienced to encourage those around us. Maybe it's not at Mannafest, but what are the opportunities we have each day to share our story with those around us and we choose not to.
Let's step up to the plate like Davy Beckett said and start to live radically. Lets not be ashamed of our faith and who God has called us to be. Let's sort living 100% for him. Let's tell the WORLD.
Yes, we might go through persecution and difficult times because of it, but is our God not worth it. Our faith that we have built our lives upon, is it not worth it. I believe it is. Let's stop denying Jesus with our lives but let his light and his love shine through us. Go on, i dare you.

Sunday, April 30, 2006


Has God been challenging you to share your testimony. Maybe you have you been through difficult times in your life but your faith in God made you strong and helped you get through.
We would love it if some of you guys would share your story at the next Mannafest.

The theme is `Blessed are the Persecuted´.
Maybe we don´t all experience persecution in the same way as the many churches in other countries do, but we all face difficulties and trials everyday. Yet through it all, God is our constant hope and provider.
We all have a story to share about the journey we are on and what God has done for us, what he is doing for us and how he is changing our lives each day.

Has God been challenging you to share your story, to share what God has done for you that others may find hope and encouragement. If so, then we would love to hear from you.

Email suzi on suzanne@yfcni.org with your details and what you would like to share.
What better way to be encouraged in our faith than by our friends around us.

Blessed are the Peacemakers

Hey everyone,
So sorry for the delay. Everything should be sorted now.

What an amazing night with Andy McCourt.
I don´t know about you guys but Andy really challenged me again. We have a responsiblity as the church to lead the way as peacemakers in our country.

Ask yourself the question have you been hindering or helping to make peace. Setting back and trying not to get involved is not being a peacemaker. God has challenged us to stand up and be counted, to make a differnce, to be history makers. So what are we going to do about it.

Take time to pray and think about the attitudes in our lives that are preventing us from being peacemakers. Ask God to help us to change and develop an attitude that seeks to bring peace to every situation we face.


Can´t wait to hear your thoughts.
God Bless
Mannafrest Team

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The Podcast is here!

Great news guys! The new Mannafest Podcast has arrived. Now you can listen to the mannafest talks on your computer or MP3 players wherever and whenever you want. Why not share them with your friends?

Each month we will update them. All the talks from Oct -March are now online including Lucy Hill's talk from last Saturday. To find out more go to the mannafest website - www.yfcni.org/mannafest

For you who are familiar with Podcasting the URL feed is http://www.yfcni.org/mannafest/podcasts/podcast.xml

If you are not familiar with podcasting go to the Mannfest website for Help or if you would rather download the MP3 files direct you can.


Monday, March 13, 2006

Blessed are the Pure In Heart - March

What another amazing night we had on Saturday.
It was so good to see so many of you there, and as one person said to me
' to open the balcony as we couldn't fit everyone down stairs was amazing'.
Very Exciting.

I hope you where challenged by what Lucy said and that all of us will take a good look at our hearts and the things we are letting into them.
May we seek to be captivated only by God and not what society offers.

I loved that you guys just wanted to keep worshippping on Saturday night too.
God is good.
What do you think if maybe some Mannafest night, we don't have a set finishing time but just continue to Worship as we feel God leads us. Would people be able to stay later. Let me know what you think.

Looking forward to hearing your comments

God Bless
Mannafest Team

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Blessed our those who are merciful

What an amazing night again.
God is really moving.
It's so good to hear so many of your thoughts already.

Please keep blogging and telling us your stories, not just about mannafest ,but what God is speaking to you about. What's happening in your town, your community. Let's really look out for each other and pray for one another.

We want mannafest to be a place where people feel welcome and part of a bigger community that really loves and cares for each other.
Let's really live out the BE -ATTITUDES!!!!!!

Love the idea about the team going out on the streets after mannafest. Let's pray about that.
Other people, let us know what you think about this idea.
God is doing something, let's make sure we listen to him.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Share your Story on Accepting God's Call

I love when God calls, I love that he doesn't ask us to become experts at anything,
He doesn't ask us to learn all the best methods or to train for months before
we go out and serve him.
All he asks is for us to be obedient. Yep, that's it, obedient.
How cool is that!!!!!
When God calls, he promises to provide, we don't need to worry about being
good enough or knowing exactly what to say or do. But just to know that we are called.
What freedom this offers us. It takes the pressure off,
Instead of it being about us and what we can do, it puts the focus all on our creator, our father, our God.

It has been so encouraging to hear all your stories. To read how so many of you have answered
God 's call to reach people with sharing bread and yourselves in so many different ways.
We know this has been quite an experience which has challenged us all to take action.
We have loved hearing all the stories both personally and on the blog and know they have
encouraged so many people.

With February Mannafest nearing in a few days, we would love it if some of you guys
would share your stories on what you got up to after last mannafest, your
experience of giving out bread in your schools and towns etc. Maybe get a few people up on stage,
just to answer a few questions.
We would love people to hear what you did and if you have noticed any impact from it. I know that it won't
be possible to have loads of people on stage but we would love for all the mannafesters
to hear a few of the stories. So if you are interested please contact Suzi on suzanne@yfcni.org
We shall look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you so much to all of you who have commented on the blog and shared your stories.
Keep Serving Him. May God Bless YOU.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Bread of Life...

God is good, how good was Mannafest on Saturday night?!
God was there and we hope that you met with him!

We just wanted to know on the Mannfest team how the bread handing out was going?
Did you do it?
Are you still planning it?
Has anyone any stores to tell,
if so please leave a comment and share what happened!

Priscilla Reid was great wasn't she, everything she had to say was so true! Those who hunger and thirst for Righteousness, guys we hope that you are hungry and thirsty for more of God!!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Welcome to Mannafest Blog!

Hey Guys,

Welcome to the Mannafest Belfast BLOG! Happy New Year to you. 2006 has arrived and we have decided to setup our very own BLOG.. This is where you will find the latest news and thoughts from the Mannafest team so make sure you bookmark this in your favourites and check up regularly. As well as Blog entries there will also be images posted and useful weblinks!

This is a place where you can log on and check out the latest Mannafest stuff and it gives you the opportunity to leave comments. We hope you will, you don't need to be a registered Blogger to leave a comment - EVERYONE is welcome!

This season we have been looking at the Beatitudes - "A Time to be". We would love to hear from you, your thoughts on Mannafest and any stories where God has really worked in your lives this season so start sending those comments.


The Mannafest Team