Moder­a­tor ap­pointed

The Galloway News - - DISTRICT NEWS -

The re­tir­ing Moder­a­tor, Mr David Gib­son, wel­comed ev­ery­one to the June pres­bytery meet­ing.

There was a spe­cial wel­come for his fa­ther who had cel­e­brated his 99th birth­day the pre­vi­ous week.

In his last ad­dress to pres­bytery, David re­minded that Je­sus did not of­ten fol­low tra­di­tion. His main con­cern was car­ing for his peo­ple and for stand­ing up for those who were in need.

Later in his moder­a­tor’s re­port he thanked pres­bytery for its sup­port and fel­low­ship and said that dur­ing his year of of­fice it had been a priv­i­lege to at­tend so many churches and con­gre­ga­tions and to be heart­ened by the projects tak­ing place and by the work be­ing done in the name of Christ. How­ever, there were some di­vi­sions that sad­dened him and he called for “unity through the body of Christ”.

Pres­bytery was united in its elec­tion of Rev Sally Rus­sell, min­is­ter at Cross­michael, Par­ton and Bal­maghie with Cor­sock and Kirk­patrick Durham, as the moder­a­tor for 2016-2017. Sally was wel­comed warmly and, in turn, she thanked David for his spe­cial year as moder­a­tor.

Trib­ute was paid to the late Rev James R Wilkie who, as a wise and car­ing pas­tor, had served as min­is­ter at Thorn­hill with Pen­pont, Keir and Tyn­ron from 1987 un­til his re­tire­ment. Mr Wilkie died on April 30.

The Rev Ian Robert­son who, for 21 years, had been the min­is­ter at Col­vend, South­wick and Kirk­bean and who had re­tired in 1996, died in Lochmaben in May.

Mr Robert­son, who had a rep­u­ta­tion as a fine and gifted preacher, led his last ser­vice in his 90th year. Credit was given to him for the part he played in over­turn­ing the then coun­cil plan and keep­ing Col­vend School from clo­sure. Prayers of thanks­giv­ing were given for the lives of these two ex­cep­tional min­is­ters.

Mr Kenny McKie spoke about the work be­ing done by Scrip­ture Union in help­ing young peo­ple to ex­plore the bible and to re­spond to its teach­ings. A po­si­tion is be­ing ad­ver­tised for a new worker to start in Dum­fries and Gal­loway and he en­cour­aged folk to con­sider whether they could be that worker and de­velop the var­ied Scrip­ture Union ac­tiv­i­ties in the re­gion.

Con­ven­ers pre­sented their re­ports to pres­bytery and it was noted that there are 900 church guilds in Scot­land with 23,000 mem­bers.

Rev David Loga n , newly in­ducted min­is­ter at St Mary’s Greyfri­ars with Caerlave­rock, was wel­comed as the pres­bytery’s vo­ca­tions cham­pion to help those who are think­ing about tak­ing up min­istry in the Church of Scot­land. Ad­vi­sory com­mit­tees were in­ti­mated for the va­cant charges at Kirk­michael, Tin­wald and Torthor­wald and at Close­burn linked with Kirkma­hoe.

Pro­ce­dures can be­gin now to call min­is­ters to each of the charges. Pres­bytery agreed to re­lease Rev Stephen Ash­leyEmery from his charge at the Ben­gairn Parishes linked with Cas­tle Dou­glas and ap­point Rev David Bartholome­w as in­terim moder­a­tor.

Rev Jan­nie du Plessis is com­ing to the end of the three year pe­riod al­lowed by his prac­tis­ing cer­tifi­cate but he wishes to con­tinue in his role as min­is­ter at Dun­score with Glen­cairn and Mo­ni­aive. Pres­bytery was happy to ap­prove his con­tin­u­ing for a fur­ther three years.

The pres­bytery ac­cepted the fol­low­ing mo­tion: “While the Pres­bytery of Dum­fries and Kirkcud­bright ac­cepts the de­ci­sion of the EU ref­er­en­dum, it is united and un­equiv­o­cal in its con­dem­na­tion of the racism and xeno­pho­bia which has been ex­pressed in the run up to and since June 23. The pres­bytery is ab­so­lutely clear that ev­ery­one is equally wel­come re­gard­less of race or re­li­gion, within its bounds and through­out Scot­land and the UK, and that any other view or at­ti­tude is con­trary to the teach­ing of Je­sus Christ and the Church of Scot­land.”

The moder­a­tor ad­journed the meet­ing with prayer. Re­fresh­ments af­ter the meet­ing were pro­vided by Dum­fries: St Ge­orge’s and thanks go to them for their hos­pi­tal­ity.

The next meet­ing is on Septem­ber 28.

Smiles Rev Sally Rus­sell, the new moder­a­tor, with Rev Bill Hogg, pres­bytery clerk, on the left and Mr David Gib­son, the re­tir­ing moder­a­tor on the right

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