Hope for 2014
The Most Rev David Chillingworth, Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church says “There are many things about which we should be prayerfully concerned as we enter 2014. The life of the world is still stained by war, hunger, injustice and suffering of all kinds. Our New Year Resolutions are doomed to fade quickly under the pressure of events.
“But Christian faith affirms that new beginnings which are rooted in recognition of our failures and shortcomings can be the start of a new and forgiven life. New Year can be a time for setting right our relationships with apology and reconciliation. We can set aside the feeling of helplessness which dulls our optimism and our energy for new challenges.
“The world needs that hope – may you find those blessings in 2014”
New Dean for Diocese of Moray, Ross and Caithness
The Rt Rev Mark Strange, Bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness is delighted to announce that the Rev Canon Alison Simpson, Synod Clerk of the Diocese and Rector of St Columba’s Nairn, has accepted his invitation to be the next Dean of Moray, Ross and Caithness. Bishop Mark says “I am delighted that Alison has accepted this invitation and look forward to her ministry to the people of the Diocese and her ministry to me. Alison will bring with her a love of Theology and a love for the land and people of this large Diocese, a combination that can only enhance the Church’s mission in the Highlands and Moray.”
The appointment will take effect on the 1st of February 2014. One of Alison’s first tasks will be to conduct an Election of a new Synod Clerk.
Alison Simpson succeeds the Very Rev Cliff Piper who has served as Dean of the Diocese since 2009. In expressing his thanks to Cliff Piper, Bishop Mark says “Cliff has shown us all how to care for and to improve the beautiful churches in the diocese and we now have a diocese which understands Canon 35! I also wish to thank him personally for the way he cared for me, my family and the diocese during the time that I was struggling with ill health. “Cliff, who continues as Rector of St John’s, Forres, will I am sure also continue to gently remind us all of our Canonical requirements.”
The Rev Canon Dr Joseph Morrow is appointed as the new Lord Lyon King of Arms
The Rev Canon Dr Joseph Morrow, Chancellor of the Diocese of Brechin, Honorary Canon of St Paul’s Cathedral, Dundee and Chaplain, Glamis Castle has been appointed as the new Lord Lyon King of Arms.
The Lord Lyon office dates from the 14thCentury. Duties include the granting of armorial bearings and judicial rulings on who has the right to bear an existing coat of arms
The appointment was made by the Queen on the recommendation of the First Minister. Under section 3 of the Lyon King of Arms (Scotland) Act 1867, the part-time appointment is based at Edinburgh’s New Register House. It was made following advertisement, interview of a short-list of candidates by a selection board followed by recommendation to the First Minister.
Dr Morrow has a special interest in ecclesiastical history and 35 years’ experience of the practical application of ceremonial within a variety of settings including State, Civil, Military and Ecclesiastical areas of Scottish life.
Full details of the appointment can be read on:
New cookbook brings ‘food for thought’ this Lent
The Scottish Episcopal Church and Christian Aid have come together to launch a brand new cookbook for Lent 2014, bringing ‘food for thought’ from around the world to churches and families in Scotland.
Inspired by last year’s Enough Food For Everyone IF campaign, which focused on tackling global hunger in a world of plenty, the ‘Lent Food’ book is full of recipes for good food at low cost. Members of the Scottish Episcopal Church were invited to contribute their ideas for interesting meals, using at least one locally sourced ingredient or fair trade product. The cookbook also includes prayers, Bible studies and thought-provoking stories from Christian Aid’s partners, and projects that the Scottish Episcopal Church supports overseas.
The intention of this joint venture is to help generate reflection and discussion around themes of food justice, how our food is made, and what individuals and communities in Scotland can do to challenge the fact that each night 1 in 8 people in the world still go to bed hungry.
The Most Rev David Chillingworth, Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church says“God’s grace is experienced in both feeding and fasting. I hope that this book will encourage a thoughtful attitude to our food and make us mindful of the link between food and justice for the poor of the world.”
The cookbook is provided free of charge, but all donations will go towards furthering the work of Christian Aid. Copies of the cookbook will shortly be sent to every Scottish Episcopal Church congregation. Further copies can be ordered from either Christian Aid Scotland (0141 221 7475) or from the General Synod Office (0131 225 6357). Postage costs will be applied.
Three days in Holy Week
A devotional book for Lent based on a series of Lenten reflections given in St Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Fifth Avenue, New York by the Rt Rev Dr Robert Gillies, Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney has been published by Handsel Press and is now available for sale at £6.95. Advance copies are available at cost price before Lent at £5.00 – contact email@example.com.
Trevor Hart, formerly Professor of Divinity in the University of St Andrews and now Rector of St Andrew’s Episcopal Church in St Andrews says of this book “The tradition of offering meditations on Jesus’ seven last words from the cross is a long and venerable one, and a fitting Scriptural way to bring the church’s Lenten preparation for the celebration of Easter to a climax. In this eminently readable little book Bishop Bob Gillies demonstrates just how rich and valuable a tradition is when done well. In a series of vivid engagements with gospel passages he leads us from the last supper Jesus shared with his disciples, through the terrible events of Good Friday, and on to the enigma of the first Easter morning. Each meditation brings the biblical text alive and refreshes our reading of it by relating the events of Holy Week to the pattern of Jesus’ earlier ministry, and suggesting how each speaks directly into our own situation today. A fine aid to personal devotion for any season of the year.”
Design Group for Discussion of Same Sex Relationships
The Design Group has confirmed 29-30 April as the date (and Pitlochry as the location) for holding a Cascade Conversation – Listening across the Spectrum in which a number of representatives from each diocese of the Scottish Episcopal Church will be invited to participate. As the name would suggest, it is hoped that this model for conversation can be cascaded through dioceses and charges over the coming months to ensure that all levels of the church can contribute and share in the discussions.
The Design Group is chaired by the Rt Rev Dr Nigel Peyton, who says “The Design Group has been working over the past few months to establish an ethos on which the processes for discussing same sex relationships can be based. It is important that all people who share in the life of our church are listened to with respect and consideration and are offered the opportunity to contribute towards finding a way forward in shaping a model for living with diversity. We hope that such a model can, in time, be made available more widely within the Anglican Communion.”
Meetings of the Design Group have been taking place on a regular basis since September. One of the members of the group, Vicky Gunn, stepped down in October and Ruth Jeffries (from the Diocese of Moray, Ross and Caithness) was appointed by the Mission and Ministry Board to join the group.
An update on the work of the Design Group will be given at each of the 2014 Spring Diocesan Synods.
The Provincial Overseas Committee of the General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church is a member of the Scotland-Malawi partnership and has asked that the following items be highlighted:
Funding available for young people volunteering in Malawi:
Are you 16-24 years old? Planning to volunteer in Malawi this year, but struggling to meet the full cost because of personal or family circumstances.The McConnell International Foundation could help. It’s Livingstone Volunteers scheme has ten grants of £500 each for young Scots who are volunteering in Malawi in 2014, thanks to support from Livingstone 200 and individual donors.
You can find the application form here mcconnellinternationalfoundation.org/livingstone-volunteers/. The closing date for applications is 31 January and the awards will be announced in early March. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Fairtrade Fortnight (24th February – 9th March) – Just Trading Scotland:
By the end of last year’s Fairtrade Fortnight, JTS had over 700 groups complete their 90kg Rice Challenge! Just Trading Scotland (JTS) had set a 6 tonne target to reach the 100 tonnemilestoneby the end of Fairtrade Fortnight. Thanks to the great effort JTS more than doubled that target and reached 108 tonnes!Currently, JTS have sold 127 tonnes. As Fairtrade Fortnight 2014 quickly approaches, they are looking to reach a total of 150 tonnes! They are starting the count now, up until their 5th Birthday in April! If you look at it from a different perspective, those 150 tonnes maps out the trail fromKaronga to Paisley, by individual grains of rice!
Schools, churches, Fair Trade groups, colleges, universities, Fair Trade shops and wholefoods cooperatives have all worked together throughout JTS’ 5 years as a small social enterprise, to take them one massive step forward on their campaign to open up major markets for Malawi rice farmers.
As a company, JTS are looking to impact the lives of many farmers in Malawi. By reaching this goal, they can provide sustainable incomes for even more smallholder farmers. For more information about their 90kg Rice Challenge and Fairtrade Fortnight campaign contact JTS:www.jts.co.uk or email@example.com.
The Claremont Trust:
The Claremont Trust supports groups giving practical expression to their faith in Scotland and overseas, eg. innovative faith-based efforts to tackle social need and promote inclusion locally. The Trust welcomes applications from any faith group. The resources are slender, around £6,000 a year in grants of not more than £1,000. Constructive and radical enterprises which work towards a fairer world are its priority. For further information contact Rev Chris Fulcher, St Blaan’s Manse, Southend, Argyll, PA28 6RQ. Tel. 01586 830504 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Call for prayers for Sudan
Earlier this month the Most Rev David Chilingworth, Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church received a letter sent by The Archbishop of Canterbury to Primates in the Anglican Communion at the request of Archbishop Daniel Deng Bul Yak, Archbishop of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan and Sudan and Bishop of Juba – urging prayers for an end of the fighting and spreading violence which has overtaken large regions of South Sudan, and asking that as brothers and sisters in the Anglican Communion, we press our governments to take steps to end this senseless war and to pressure the two sides to resolve the problem through dialogue and peaceful means.
The full letter can be read at: www.archbishopofcanterbury.org/articles.php/5220/archbishop-urges-prayers-as-violence-mounts-in-south-sudan
New Year Honour
Congratulations are extended to Roger Gifford, recent Lord Mayor of the City of London who was awarded a knighthood in this year’s New Year Honours. Roger and his family are well known figures in the Scottish Episcopal Church, having been stalwarts of St Andrew’s church, St Andrews for many years . Roger’s father, the Rev Douglas Gifford, served for a number of years in the Diocese of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane.
Across the Dioceses
For news of activities and events across our seven dioceses, check out the diocesan websites:
Is your church brave enough for ‘Beastly Bible Stories’?
Claire Benton-Evans, Youth and Children Officer for the Edinburgh Diocese, who launched her new children’s book Beastly Bible Stories at the recent Christian Resources Exhibition Scotlandis available to lead special events for children in churches, involving interactive storytelling, drama and art activities.
Beastly Bible Stories is the first in an eight book series which is illustrated with eye-popping cartoons. The series covers the Old and New Testaments and is aimed at primary school age children. Claire says “Kids will love these books: they contain all the blood, guts and miraculous mayhem that other children’s Bible stories are afraid to mention. Beastly Bible Stories will excite any Sunday school or RE class and show children why Jesus is so special. In Beastly Bible Stories – The Tremendous Old Testament, they will meet God’s movers and shakers, such as super-strong Samson, battle-winning King David and Moses the freedom fighter. Compared to these Old Testament heroes, Jesus and his gospel of love are radically new. In Beastly Bible Stories Jesus is fresh and exciting – he’s the surprising Saviour, star of The Terrific New Testament.”
Beastly Bible Stories 1 is available now from www.kevinmayhew.com. For more information about Beastly Bible Stories and Claire’s other books, including resources for all-age worship and creative prayer with children, visit her website: www.clairebentonevans.com. For further enquiries and information, email: email@example.com