Castle Archdale Parish Church in Fermanagh is 'serving its community' with the recent purchase of a community defibrillator. The potential life-saver will be kept on church property and will be available for both church and community use.

"The family church is serving its community," indicated the Rector, the Rev. Glenn West, in reference to the congregation's initiative for its own use and community use.

A function was held in the Oaks Restaurant, Lisnarick, to raise funds to buy the important piece of equipment, which was recently taken possession of by the rector. And while he hopes that this sort of equipment is never required, he points out that it will be there at the church.

The venture also demonstrates a feature of parish life recently highlighted by the Bishop of Clogher, the Rt. Rev. John McDowell during his President's address delivered at the Clogher Diocesan Synod, when he expressed the view that every parish in this diocese is sustained by the Grace of God to do four things. "They are there to serve the community in which they live," was one of the aspects touched on by the Bishop.

He noted: "To worship, to teach, to serve and to engage in mission. Those are four headings against which any parish could make an assessment of how faithfully and fruitfully it is carrying out the tasks to which God has called it." The defibrillator which will be available at Castle Archdale Church is one of the most up to date defibrillators available and was designed by a surgeon from Northern Ireland.

On the day that Mr. West collected their defibrillator in Belfast, a representative from another Northern Ireland Church had also arrived to collect one. Someone had become unwell on their previous day's worship and they decided to buy one, explained Mr. West, who added that "quite often there can be a waiting list in order to get them." He points out that it is computerised and it explains what to do. He believes it is straightforward to use and that there are simple instructions to be followed.

The contact numbers of those who have been instructed in the defibrillator's use will be made available. "Their phone numbers will be distributed in the community and made known," said Mr. West, who is very pleased with this important initiative.

The defibrillator will be available at the end of this month, October at Castle Archdale Church - regarded as a small church in an area of a high level of social and community interaction. A popular place of worship, where there is an open door, the church is constantly visited by people from all over the world.