Assembly ripples…

Have rather neglected the blog of late, partly because I have been at the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in Edinburgh and am only now getting back into some sort of routine. I didn’t take my laptop with me so I didn’t blog during the Assembly.

It was, however, the turn of my congregation to send an elder to the General Assembly and he has put a summary of proceedings on the church website thus saving me a bit of work (and there are pictures).

There is also a full report (That was the week that was) here if you want to read a more personal perspective from a Minister in Hamilton Presbytery. The four posts preceding this one on Peter’s Blog also refer to events during the General Assembly week.

There are also official statements on the Church of Scotland website from the Moderator regarding the outcomes from Monday’s debate on the Report of the Special Commission on Same Sex relationships and the Ministry – these can be found  here as can statements on the other key issues/debates from Assembly Week. So if you read the newspapers or followed the media reports and thought there was only one issue discussed at this Year’s General Assembly –this is the place to go to find all the other equally …or arguably MORE… important stuff!!)

It was quite a week… and the repercussions of some of the decisions are only just beginning to be felt.

I am pulling together a service for this coming Sunday on the theme of being ‘living stones’ to give my congregation a flavour of what went on during Assembly week.

“…you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ

you are a chosen people… a royal priesthood… a holy nation… a people belonging to God… that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light”

One of the acts of worship at Roll away the Stone (on the Sunday of Assembly week) was the building of a cairn composed of stones that people had brought from their part of the world.

There were big stones and small stones…pebbles and boulders… all different shapes and  sizes and colours. And as you can see from the picture … the stones also carried the name of the congregation from which they originated.

At the end of the service in Princes Street Gardens, people were invited to come forward and take away another stone with them and to remember that church in their thoughts and prayers. The elder from my congregation picked up a stone from Ayr’s St Quivox Church and we will be praying for them this Sunday.

Our stone was picked up by an Elder from Lhanbryde Church in Moray… a nice coincidence as the minister there is Rev Andrew Robertson, formerly of Kilwinning Mansefield Trinity and a friend from my training days. Our stone is now sitting on the steps to their pulpit as they continue to pray for us.