Ballywillan Men’s Fellowship learn about Easter Rising

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Members of Ballywillan Men’s Fellowship were privileged to hear a first-hand account of the Easter Rising in Dublin in 1916.

The speaker was Robert Steven, a member of the Fellowship, whose grandfather had been living in Dublin at the time and wrote a detailed account of events during the nine days of the unsuccessful revolt.

This unique account of everyday life in the city is now a much cherished family heirloom and thanks to Robert for sharing it with his fellow members was voiced by the Fellowship’s vice president, James Heaney, who presided.

Weekly meetings of the Fellowship are now under way again after the summer break and recent

speakers have included Barry Williamson, who talked about that excellent local service for the visually impaired, “Talking News“, and Judith Lavery, a PSNI crime prevention officer, who gave some valuable advice on “Scams of all sorts”.

Ballywillan Presbyterian Church has been hosting Fellowship meetings for almost 25 years, the idea of a men’s group for the retired and semi-retired having been the inspiration of the late Hal Stewart, then Clerk of Session. Never intended as a strictly Ballywillan gathering, the Fellowship has grown over the years and can now boast of having had members from almost every denomination within the district, as well as many with no church connections at all.

There is an annual subscription of £12 and a £1 subscription at weekly meetings to cover speakers’ expenses. Several charities are supported each year.

Meetings commence informally in the Link area of Ballywillan Presbyterian Church Hall at 10-30, with the talks held in the adjacent Octagon at 11am. Proceedings end at noon. In addition, several outings are planned each year and lunch is enjoyed with family and friends several times a session. A warm welcome awaits any retired or semi-retired men of the district as members or as visitors.