Honour marks career spanning almost five decades for Carrickfergus minister

A Carrickfergus pastor whose career spanned 47 years has been recognised in the Queen’s 2022 New Year Honours list.

Pastor Samuel Grant.

Reverend Dr Samuel Grant was awarded an MBE for services to the community.

Pastor Grant’s son, Jonathan, said the family believed his father to be one of the town’s longest-serving ministers before his retirement due to ill health.

A former manager at Courtaulds, Pastor Grant founded a church at the Orange Hall on Albert Road with other former employees of the textile factory.

The church later moved to Sunnylands Community Centre and then North Road, before settling at its current location, Christchurch on Oakfield Drive.

Among many roles through the years, he served as mayor’s chaplain twice, a position he also held for the local branch of the Royal British Legion for over 30 years.

Pastor Grant, now 77, was also padre of the Ulster Defence Regiment Association for over two decades.

“Dad founded the Associated Ministers’ Fellowship, worked with ex-service men and women and with local ministers in the borough, and worked with council,” Jonathan added.

“He was also involved with many interventions during times of civil unrest in the town.”

Pastor Grant’s vision was to build at home and abroad, leading to missionary work with organisations in both India and Nigeria, including the foundation of a girls’ Bible school.

He penned a weekly column for the Carrickfergus Advertiser newspaper for many years.

The Grant family said the award was a “deeply humbling recognition” of Pastor Grant’s work through the years.