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Liberal Christian Thought
The Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland is a small but
significant denomination with a historical witness to liberal
Christianity. Although a separate denomination in its own right, it has
no exact parallel with any other church outside Ireland and may best be
understood in relation to Irish Presbyterianism, in which tradition it had
its origins and with which it still retains a deep affinity.
that the minister and elders of this church are not required to sign the
Westminster Confession of Faith unlike those in the Presbyterian Church
that the minister and elders of this church accept the Bible alone as
the rule of the Christian faith and duty under the teaching of the Lord
that the minister and members of this church have the duty and freedom
to discover for themselves what God is teaching His people through the
words of Scripture.
that the church is not a closed community but is open to the wisdom and
insight of other churches and welcomes the fellowship of other Christian
that we are not bound by compulsory subscription to man-made creeds and
doctrines of Faith. We declare allegiance to the principle that: the
teaching of Christ must take precedence over the doctrines of a later
time, and Christian unity is to be sought, not in the uniformity of
creed but in a common standard of duty and adherence to the commandments
set out in the Holy Bible.
Respect for All
The term "Non-Subscribing" was applied in 1721 to those congregations
and their ministers who resented compulsory subscription to the
Westminster Confession of Faith as a test of soundness of faith. Their
resentment was based on their profound feeling that man-made creeds and
confessions limit and restrict the sacred right of private judgement.
The Constitution of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland,
of which our Congregation is a constituent part, has been described as
'a noble document, an ideal basis for the united Christian Church of the
future'. So we are not members of an opposition Church but rather we
belong to a friendly church which regards all people with respect.
Ministers of other churches are, by our constitution, welcome to join in
Communion and to occupy our pulpits.
The first clause of the Constitution of the Non-Subscribing Church of
'That the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament are the Rule of the
Christian Faith and Duty under the teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ.'
Agreement among Christians of every detail of doctrine is not necessary
to the acceptable practice of the faith, and true unity is to be sought,
not in the uniformity of creed, but in a common standard of
righteousness and obedience to the commandments which Christ has laid
We believe that it is the inalienable right of every Christian to search
the Scriptures and, with prayerful consideration, to seek the will of
God through lives of discipleship.
We believe that the Christian way of life is a life after His pattern.
Of Non-Subscribers of the past it can be honestly said 'they went about
The Principles of free enquiry and love of liberty have bound the
leaders together over the years to minister to the spiritual wants of
many and aid the spread of true religion and just freedom among
succeeding generations of worshippers.
Faith guided by Reason
We meet for the worship of God and the service of man, recognizing a
Divine purpose in nature and human life, regarding Jesus Christ as the
sole King and Head of the Church. We hold that scripture is the only
rule of faith and Duty under the teaching of Christ.
We accept the guidance of our reason and conscience and we believe that
human creeds and confessions restrict the sacred rights of private
judgement which is a fundamental principle of the Reformation.
Everyone is invited to attend our services of worship and explore our
unique approach to faith.