Tommy's story

“I would have done anything to be honest, other than be a minister”

Rev Tommy MacNeil of Martin's Memorial Church in Stornoway talks about creating a safe place for the unchurched in a remote part of Scotland and the challenges of a life in ministry.

“I would have done anything to be honest, other than be a minister, but over the course of a couple of years God made it very clear that’s what he wanted for me.

“The Shed Project in Stornoway is really our attempt as a church to build some bridges with our community… it was about creating a neutral space where those who were unchurched and had no desire to go to church, where if they were facing particular challenges in their lives then they would know in this community there is a safe place they can come to.

“I knew it would busy and I knew it would be demanding but nothing quite prepares you for the demands of the job.

“In a sense you are on call 24/7 and although that’s challenging, for me, it is actually part of the beauty of the work because actually you’re giving to people and the more you give to people, the more you get to spend time with them, the more you see just the beauty of life and you never lose for doing that.

“If you’re looking for a life that is challenging, that is exciting, that is dynamic and demanding then ministry is it.”

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