Belfast Telegraph

Watch: Saintfield Girls' Brigade wins silver at world song contest

By Eamon Sweeney

A Girls' Brigade group from Northern Ireland has come second in a worldwide song-writing competition helping to mark the organisation's 125th anniversary next year.

Members of 2nd Saintfield Presbyterian and Parish Girls' Brigade saw their song Rooted in Love claim the silver medal, coming just behind the first-placed entry penned by the 1st Singapore Company.

Organised as part of the build-up to the 125th anniversary of the Girls' Brigade in 2018, the international competition was open to all members and was based on a religious theme that will echo through next year's celebrations.

Entrants were tasked with writing a song to 'help celebrate God's goodness and the impact of His empowering spirit through Girls' Brigade'.

However, the entry and judging criteria were strict.

Songs could not be more than four minutes long and had to be lively in nature and suitable for use in company meetings and praise and worship services.

The lyrics and melody also had to be original.

The finished product was judged on song-writing arrangement, technique and creativity.

Latifa McCullagh, the Northern Ireland vice-president of the Girls' Brigade, sent her congratulations to the girls from the 2nd Saintfield unit.

She said: "We are so proud of 2nd Saintfield Girls' Brigade on winning second place in the song-writing competition organised by Girls' Brigade International.

"It was a fantastic achievement."

The bronze award went to 6th Singapore Company, while the fourth place merit award was presented to 6th Kingston Company from Jamaica.

The Girls' Brigade is an international and interdenominational Christian youth organisation which was founded in Dublin in 1893. The modern version of the organisation was founded in 1964 through the amalgamation of the Girls' Brigade of Ireland, the Girls' Guildry of Scotland and the Girls' Life Brigade of England. It operates in over 50 countries across the world and is divided in five fellowships that span Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Americas, Europe and the Pacific region.

Listen to the song being performed at www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk

The song's lyrics

In the beginning, you were there

Here and now and everywhere

You ignite our lives with your loving heart

Faith in you means we'll never be apart

Chorus

We love because you first loved us

We love because you first loved us

We love because you first loved us

So I can love my sister

Love my brother

Love each other today

Living as children, safe and secure

Rooted in love - is where we can grow

Reaching out, to others we know

If we live in love it will overflow

This amazing journey, through God's love

You call us to faith, in Jesus we trust

In God's amazing light, you brighten my path

We're ready to go, just lead us where

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