Posts Tagged ‘mission’


Meinl Cajon Kit in Albania

September 20, 2014

This September (2014) I had the privilege of visiting a child feeding programme in Albania… the aim was to serve, encourage and inspire the local Albanian team… and to engage with the children and their families…

I had thought to do some percussion with the Kids… but there were two issues… 1. my percussion is big and heavy (baggage allowances were pretty small)… and 2. whatever I brought with me I wanted to leave behind.

I had already planned to bring some tuned percussion in the form of a BoomWhacker kit (Here at Thomann)… as this was a lightweight 25 piece kit…

So the idea was to build percussion in country… and we were advised not to assume that we could find the resources we needed there… so we needed to bring all that we needed

That’s were the Meinl Cajon Kit came in… a ‘flat pack’ Cajon.

Meinl Kit

Weighing in at 4kg it was ideal weight and size for transport… so ok I did have to bring some clamps, an awl, a screw driver, compression straps, sandpaper and glue… but by pre drilling and counter sinking the playing surface before I left no drill was necessary.

Meinl ConstructionArriving at our first overnight stop in Albania I started assembling the main body of the kit (gluing top, sides, back and front brace) before heading to bed and completed construction (snare, playing service and feet) after breakfast in the morning…

Back on the bus again… the first use of the (unsanded) cajon was at a staff meeting with the Albanian team…

I haven’t played a Cajon that much… but the highly reflective room we were in created a ‘huge’ sound… the bass notes had real body and depth. Folks sat up and took notice… and the Boom Whackers were a delight (our translator told us he was bewildered that he could ‘hear music’ before he realised that the tubes were ‘tuned’)


Movement in worship was also part of our team – and the girls started with some pre-recorded music – but this started to be drowned out as more and more people started to participate… so I joined in on the Cajon… wow!  in a few moments the pulse of the drum was filling the room, providing a foundation for the dance that was developing…

Meinl FinishedI had to be careful – the Cajon had sharp edges (not sanded yet)… but the effect was dynamic… excellent!

The cajon had proved to be very effective…

After our two meetings of the first day I spent some time sanding the edges of the instrument, giving it a smooth safe playing surface.

The Cajon was a hit (pardon the pun) with the team in Albania and through the week various Kids and Adults gave it a go… and everyone has great fun.

Before our team left we wrote some Albanian phrases (suggested by the local kids) on the Cajon… their promises and prayers  for their village and country — te jene te lire (to live free), blessings on their families, faith, hope… each surface covered with words written in colourful sharpies… and as the drum is played, the sound will resonate through the words… carrying them through the villages and valleys of the places where it is played.

The Meinl Kit was easy to put together – it sounds good (though the snare sound could be a little better) – and it is easy to play… may it’s sound resound for you Albania….




Blue Flame – Mission Conference – last few days to book your place.

March 15, 2012

Blue Flame Ministries are hosting a Missions Day Conference with Bob Johnson at the Kings Factory in Inverness on Sunday 18th March…

If you would like to come along to this conference complete your application as soon as you can… see Book for Bob. to download an application form.

Bob Johnson operates Bob & Kimberly Johnson Ministries in San Francisco, California.  Reaching out to the homeless and poor of the city, come along and see what lessons we can learn to reach those in out towns and cities.


The Kessock effect…

March 12, 2012

Over the past two weekends I had the privilege of spending time with church leaders from two major denominations in Scotland.

On the 3rd March I was at an event convened by the Church of Scotland at the Barn Church in Culloden was looking at how different expressions of church could work together missionally called “New alongside the Old; Partners in mission”. During his welcome and outlining the purpose of the day the minister from Hilton church explained why an image of the Kessock bridge was on the programme… a bridge is a connection, it connects people from one place to another and that the event was as bridge where different church expressions could become connected and that we in the church are also bridges into our cities, towns and communities.

Then on the 10th March I attended the diocesan synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church to share a little about the work of Street Pastors in Inverness. We started the day worshiping together at St Andrew’s Cathedral in Inverness. The Bishops address also talked about the Kessock bridge, how it links communities and the how the church was reshaping itself to pursue a missional agenda that will guide the church in the decades to come.

The 10th March was also the feast day of St. Kessog, an Irish celtic cleric who made missional visit(s) to the Inverness area possibly 40-50 years before St Columba came. Kessock hill was named after him, and Kessock bridge gets its name from there.

I would not claim to know, or have fully researched the significance of St Kessog visit to the area in around 500ad, but found this little passage about his work… “For reasons unknown [St Kessog] captured the imagination of the common people… It may have been that because he worked among the people they could identify with him as part of their community… It may be because of his bravery working on the boundary of three Kingdoms often at war with each other. Or his exemplary life style of poverty and worship.”

I was very encouraged that at the core of both of these events with the Church of Scotland and the Scottish Episcopal Church lay a heart of mission. A mission to the community in which we live that encompassed the attributes of St Kessog 1500 years ago. Living, caring, worshiping in the community.

There is a bridge in Inverness called the Kessock Bridge and it is a physical reminder that spiritually in Christ Jesus there is a bridge between humanity and God, and this bridge is worked out in His church, his bride… that we all are part of.

More images and informatuon about the Kessock Bridge can be found on the “Undiscovered Scotland” website here.

A summary of the life of St Kessog can be found here.


re:Connect Inverness

December 1, 2011

Over the past few months I’ve been praying, thinking, waiting, wrestling with a calling into full time ministry.

These past few months have been a superb time of preparation – with missions trips, training, conferences, with space and time to contemplate Gods fulness, and being able to spend time people with few limitations.

re:Connect Inverness LogoAnd what is birthed in this time is re:Connect Inverness.

The mission of re:Connect Inverness is to “Show the Love of God for this City in practical ways”.

The purpose of the ministry is about connection between God and people, individuals and communities, soul, mind and spirit.  And doing that by being a representative of Christ to the people we meet and in the circumstances of the moment.

This is all a work in progress – so if I’m not clear, please bear with me… but I do know where this is going… so come along with me for the journey.

So… here we go.  If you want to find out more please visit the Misson… and Ministry link on