The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire)
Sunday schools ‘need updating’
Church o f Scotland congregations have been urged to modernise the way their Sunday schools operate.
The Right Rev Lorna Hood, moderator of the Kirk’s General Assembly, said action was needed to ensure more children and young adults play a central role in the life of the Church.
She said a review of resources like multimedia must be carried out to ensure “fewer children drift away during their formative years”.
“Young people are not the church of tomorrow, they are the church of today,” said the moderator, who attended the National Youth Assembly in Dundee yesterday.
“A parishioner said tome recently that her grandchildrenwerenotgoingbackto their Sunday school as they were ‘ fed up colouring in’.
“We need to ensure our worship resources are constantly updated and relevant in today’s fast-changing world.”
Mrs Hood, who was ordained when she was 24, has urged young people to consider training for the ministry to fill vacant posts.
If the majority of serving Kirk ministers were to retire at 68, about 320 would leave by 2023.
The Rev David Robertson, minister at St Peter’s Free Church of Scotland in Dundee, said children were not attending the Kirk because their parents were not there and the “missing generation” was actually people aged 30-50.
In what appeared to be a reference to the Kirk’s ongoing row over the ordination of gay clergy, he said: “A watered-down liberal theology or a hyped-up legalistic theology is something that ultimately destroys the church.
“Perhaps the root cause of a dearth of young people in the church goes a bit deeper than the moderator seems to be suggesting.” The funeral of former Scottish Conservative leader David McLetchie, who died from cancer last week at the age of 61, is being held today.
The leaders of all political parties are expected to attend the service, at Blackhall St Columba’s Church in Edinburgh.
Former chancellor Alistair Darling, a Labour MP, Shetland Liberal Democrat MSP Tavish Scott, an exparty leader, shadow Scottish Secretary Margaret Curran and Finance Secretary John Swinney are also expected to be there.
Mr McLetchie, a Lothians MSP, died in St Columba’s Hos p i c e , Edinburgh, last Monday, surrounded by his family.
He was the Scottish Tories’ group leader at Holyrood from 1999 to 2005.
He was a list MSP and will be automatically replaced by a member of his ownpartywithouttheneed for a by-election.