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About Skainos

Skainos is the name of the new project at East Belfast Mission, dedicated to renewing and bringing hope to the neighborhoods around Ballymacarret.  Right now the project is nearing completion, and we are all looking forward to settling into this space in October.  You can learn more about this project, it’s hopes and the history of it’s development, at the Skainos website.

What will happen in Skainos?

The new facility will house much more than the previous building at East Belfast Mission was able to accommodate.  It is making new partnerships possible, with an aim to offering hope and care to people of a variety of ages and needs.  The following are activities that will be happening within this site:

An overhead shot gives an idea of the extent of the Skainos facility.

  • The ministries of East Belfast Mission, which include a Methodist congregation, a cafe, an employment project, a homelessness project with 26 residential beds, youth and children’s programs, and community work including counseling.
  • AgeNI – which provides care services, advice and advocacy for those later in life.
  • Tearfund – an organization that helps churches reach out to serve their community, and also identify with those in poverty around the world.
  • Belfast Metropolitan College – offer education through six on-site classrooms to help prepare local young people for a variety of occupations.
  • Beacon House – a day center that supports mental well being, and has a range of classes and support programs.
  • In addition to the housing provided at the homelessness project, there are also 34 apartments on the upper floors, a split between private ownership, private rentals, and public housing.

Where does the name come from?

The word, “Skainos”, is a Greek word that literally means, “tabernacle” or “to pitch a tent”.  It is used in the introduction of the Gospel of John, where the author speaks of  God sending Jesus to live and identify with humanity.

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling [pitched his tent] among us”

What an amazing reality – God has chosen in Jesus to encamp among us, in the midst of the hurt and pain of humanity, with the purpose of bringing redemption and new life.


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