It doesn’t seem like twenty years ago since I bashed out acoustic guitar alongside Andy Flannagan and the Neighbourhood Watch Tour felt like an enjoyable step back in time. The Belfast event was just one part of a UK tour by Andy Flannagan and Shane Claiborne addressing the concept of neighbourhood and community investment.
The event was supported by Tearfund with Shane Claiborne, Andy Flannagan and Tim Magowan sharing songs and stories taken from their own experiences around loving and investing in their neighbours and communities.
During the event Tim spoke about his time in Uganda with Olympic Silver Medalists Peter and Richard Chambers and the launch of the “One Big Mountain” to bring clean water to thousands of families across Africa. You can find out more here.
I hadn’t come across Shane Claiborne before and discovered quickly how well matched his viewpoint is to the music of Andy Flannagan. Shane’s adventures have taken him from the streets of Calcutta where he worked with Mother Teresa to the wealthy suburbs of Chicago where he served at the influential mega-church Willow Creek. As a peacemaker, his journeys have taken him to some of the most troubled regions of the world – from Rwanda to the West Bank – and he’s been on peace delegations in Afghanistan and Iraq.
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Andy’s is a musical story-teller, a passionate and talented songwriter who paints a picture of life as he sees it. The beautiful, melodic guitar playing hasn’t changed but the story has matured and grown more passionate through Andy’s experiences in diverse communities.
Both Andy and Shane share the same awareness of a broken world and they are equally passionate about the solution. You can find out more about the Neighbourhood Watch Tour on both the Shane Claiborne and Andy Flannagan Facebook pages. The Belfast event was managed by Fuel Events who are definitely worth a follow on Facebook.