New min­is­ter ends five years of wait­ing

Rutherglen Reformer - - News From The Pews - Jonathan Ged­des

Ruther­glen West and Ward­lawhill Church have ap­pointed their first min­is­ter in over five years.

The church have called Rev Malcolm Cuth­bert­son, who is cur­rently at Bail­lieston Mure Me­mo­rial and Bail­lieston St Andrew’s churches.

The church are hop­ing that he will take over by the end of May.

Ruther­glen West and Ward­lawhill’s last min­is­ter was the Rev Jack Drum­mond, who re­tired at the end of 2011.

Ian Duncan, the ses­sion clerk, told the Re­former he was “over the moon” at the ap­point­ment.

He said: “We are now in a position where we have elected a new min­is­ter.

“He preached as the sole nom­i­nee and we sat down and in­ter­viewed him.

“Af­ter that we put vot­ing pa­pers out to the con­gre­ga­tion and it was a unan­i­mous vote in favour, with 116 in favour.

“He has ac­cepted our call and it is now in the hands of Glas­gow Pres­bytery when he will start here.

“Once his feet are un­der the ta­ble we will then look at an­other is­sue. Be­cause the area has been des­ig­nated as a priority area by the Church of Scot­land, we are now al­lowed a part-time worker who can work on the com­mu­nity or youth side of things.” Ian was full of praise for Malcolm. He said: “He has a nat­u­ral abil­ity to preach. There were no notes and ev­ery­thing came from the heart so the mes­sage came over so strongly.

“It was very heart­en­ing to see him preach with­out notes. That was very im­pres­sive in it­self.”

He was also quick to praise John Ni­col­son, who has been serv­ing as the church’s locum min­is­ter.

Ian said: “John has been our preacher for the past two years and has been ab­so­lutely amaz­ing, par­tic­u­larly in his man­ner with those who are ill or be­reaved.

“We are hugely thank­ful for all the work he has put in.”

The news comes as the church marks the 10th an­niver­sary of the merger be­tween Ruther­glen West Parish a Ward­lawhill Churches.

“It was def­i­nitely needed.” he said. “I think the role of churches will change dra­mat­i­cally in the next 10 years. The Church has to go out to the peo­ple and I don’t mean just hand­ing out leaflets.

“The ups over the past few years have been that we’ve had dif­fer­ent priests and had vari­a­tion but the down­side has been that we’ve not known where we were go­ing and it has taken a long while to get where we are now.

“That’s why we are look­ing for­ward to hav­ing a min­is­ter again.

“It has been an ex­tremely happy union since 2007 and we want to move forwards.”

It has taken a long time to get to where we are now

Ap­point­ment Rev Malcolm Cuth­bert­son

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