The Belfast City Mission has had a presence within the Island Street district since 1875.
Throughout the years it has been served faithfully by many Missionaries:
Mr Robert Ferguson (1875-1895)
Mr John McAdam (1895-1916)
Mr George McKillen (1916-1918)
Mr James White (1918-1920)
Mr Thomas Magill (1920-1922)
Mr John Pattison (1922-1926)
Mr Wallace McClean (1926-1927)
Mr David Magill was then appointed to the role. Mr Magill was to serve in the district for 41 years.
“he wore out more shoe leather on the streets of East Belfast than any insurance man or rent collector”
Mr Magill had a great influence for Jesus Christ on the lives and hearts of the people he contacted, in their homes and on the streets. The onset of “the troubles” took their toll on district with fathers, sons, brothers and uncles being caught up in different “organisations”, as a result family life suffered.
Another aspect of this period was the re-development programme that was taking place in the surrounding district. However, throughout all this change the Belfast City Mission in Island Street remained focused upon its aim of coming alongside the people and sharing the Gospel and importantly seeking to point them to Christ Jesus.
This aim was carried forward by each of the succeeding Missionaries:
Mr R G Anderson (1968-1969)
Mr James A Boyd (1969-1971)
Mr Robert Humphries (1971-1973)
Mr Robert Smith (1975-1983)
Mr Robert J Jess (1983-1986 – Part-time)
Mr Samuel Morrow was appointed to Island Street on the 6th August 1987 after 5 years of service in the Sandy Row district. Mr Morrow was to oversee the opening of a new hall on Saturday 29th October 1988.
The old hall had been in existence at that time for over 100 years, however, the problem was a vesting order had been placed on it and that it was to be demolished to make way for new housing. The old hall was demolished during 1987 which meant for a period the weekly meetings were held in a large lounge of Medway Court Fold.
The Mission was consequently able to acquire a site and planning was given to build a new hall. This was a new beginning a reminder of the very heart of City Mission work, a new beginning in Christ Jesus. Mr Morrow was transferred to take up duties in the Kimberley Street district in 1996.
Mr Billy Creighton was appointed to Island Street and remained for 4 years before receiving a call to Minister in Bangor Congregational Church.
On 1st April 2000 Mr Billy McCullagh joined the staff of the Mission and was appointed to the work in Island Street hall. Mr McCullagh continued to work with great vision within the district and had been innovative in his thinking, engaging with the community at large.
On the 18th October 2008 a new extension was added to the hall, this created a multi-purpose building that has enabled and enhanced the work.
Sadly, Billy had to retire due to ill health in September 2019.
David Bisset transferred from the Ballybeen hall to oversee the work, which is now being headed by the current Missionary, Michael Waddell, who transferred after a period of service in Canton Street.
Belfast City Mission in Island Street is a place were real friendship and fellowship can be experienced. A place were all can come and find support and help for situations in daily life. But most importantly a place were people can come and find Christ Jesus the only hope for us all.
After over 19 years of faithful and dedicated service to the Belfast City Mission and especially to the people of Island Street it was with deep sadness and regret that Billy McCullagh took the difficult decision to retire due to his ongoing health difficulties. Billy battled with great resilience recently with the loss of eyesight coupled with various other complications. Alongside all of this was the loss of his dear wife Liz. Undoubtedly Billy will be missed by the fellowship and community within Island Street and by the whole family of the Belfast City Mission. Please continue to remember Billy in prayer as he adapts to this early retirement and also keep praying for strength as he still copes with his ongoing health issues.
Below are some photos from Billy`s final service :
Sunday School @ 3.00pm ( September – May )
Prayer Meeting @ 6.30pm
Gospel Service @ 7:00pm
Ladies’ Fellowship @ 7:00pm
Children’s Club @ 6.00pm ( September – June )
Bible Study and Prayer Time @ 7.30pm
Belfast City Mission is an Urban Evangelistic Mission. We are among one of the oldest Urban Missions still in existence. Our work is carried out in the inner City districts alongside a number of areas in greater Belfast.
We need your continued support to bring the message of Jesus and His salvation to the streets and communities where we work. Click the 'Donate' button on the menu above to find out how.
Belfast City Mission, Assembly Buildings,
2-10 Fisherwick Place, Belfast, BT1 6DW
T. 028 9032 0557
F. 028 9031 1793
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