Fahan Presbyterian Church

Jesus is Lord - Romans 10: 9

New Zealand Connection


John Macky a son of John Macky a farmer from Derry educated in Glasgow in 1839 and licensed with Derry 10 November 1841.  He was ordained in Fahan on June 7 1842 and resigned on April 5 1854 on being appointed to colonial mission work in New Zealand.  Mr. Macky landed at Auckland from the ship "Cashmere" on Sunday August 20 1854 with his wife (a daughter of Joseph Cochrane, Derry) and children, father, mother and sister.  He preached in St Andrew's, Auckland in the morning which was the only organised congregation there existing in or around the city.  In the afternoon he began his ministry at Otahuhu Wharf in Mr. Baird's store on the Tamaki River.  He came with a grant of £100.00 per year from the Irish Presbyterian Church, which continued for some time.  He held a service every Sabbath morning at Otahuhu and fortnightly at Tamaki and Howick.  A school and church were erected in 1855 at Otara near Otahuhu which in 1863 was the headquarters for the English troops for which Mr. Macky acted as chaplain.  He was a minister for thirty six years and he endeared himself to all with whom he came in contact.  He was distinguished for his wise counsel in Presbytery and Assembly.  None could be found so ably and so wisely as he to preside over the interests of the first United General Assembly of the New Zealand Presbyterian Church in 1862. 

For twenty seven years his faithful horse "Jack" carried its partially blind rider throughout his rough and extensive field of labour.  Jack was given to him by his brother James and it often sank in the mud to the saddle girths and set his bespattered rider under ruminating, that, "A horse is a vain thing for safety."  Once on the way to Horwick to conduct a Sabbath service his horse's legs stuck fast in one of the bridges over which he had to pass and out of it he could not be got.  Here was a predicament.  All who intimately knew Mr. Macky can fancy his vexation and the thought of breaking his appointment.  In his extremity he appealed for help to a Maori who with his wife had happened to be near.  The native answered "How much the utu?"  Mr. Macky handed him 2 shillings and they applied their united strength to relieve the horse.  This failing, his wife was appealed to.  Her response was similar "How much the utu?"  The minster having disbursed his last 2 shillings, the three together managed to place his horse on terra firma.  The Presbyterians of Horwick had their service that day as usual.  Mr. Macky used to tell this story with glee.  It will be well thought if we learn to shun the mercenary spirit of the 2 aborigines and copy the perseverance of this faithful pioneer to resolve.  "We will not from the helm to sit and weep.  But keep on course, though the rough winds say no." 

On December 5 1889 owing to failing sight and other infirmities he resigned from the active duties of the ministry.  He died on January 23 1891.   

After Mr. Macky's resignation at Fahan, Rev David Hanson was installed on September 12 1854.  He was born in Macoshquinn 1824 and educated OCB GC 1844 and licensed in Coleraine Presbytery 1846.  His first charge was at Drumkeen and he resigned from Fahan on August 23 1860.  He was installed to York Street, Belfast September 2 1860 and died of typhus fever on January 8 1865.