Presbytery Mailing 12/04/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

Apologies for the lack of content in last week's mailing, the regular compiler of these was on holiday and we hadn't received any further information for the temporary compiler to add in.


The latest edition of Presbytery Prayer Points can be found here.


Meldrum & Bourtie Church have asked that we share the below message.

We are in desperate need of new IT/Audio/Visual equipment. As a church we have been slow to upgrade because we did not know our future in terms of redevelopment. We now have a much clearer plan, but that is still a 2 or more-year long road. Do you know of any churches with redundant equipment that needs a new home? We would be grateful for anything that can help us upgrade our very old system while we wait for our full upgrade and new redevelopment project. Any help would be very appreciated.

If you are able to help, you can get in contact with Rev Alisa McDonald at Alisa.McDonald@churchofscotland.org.uk or 07838835778.


The Mission Development Officer, Rev Dr Robert Smith, will be preparing information and resources for mission for the website, this can be found at https://nenipresbytery.org.uk/mission-news/.

Presbytery Mailing 29/03/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

We have received event invitation details from a Christian Aid volunteer within the Presbytery:

On Monday June 10th, we would like to invite you to meet with Mattia Dimoh, Christian Aid’s Sierra Leone Country Director. Mattia oversees a range of projects, spanning from gender justice and social inclusion to climate justice. He will be talking in-person about the impact your support has on communities.

This will also be an opportunity to hear about “In Their Lifetime”, Christian Aid’s pioneering programme which seeks to invest in innovative projects that transform lives. 

Location: Upper Hall, Aberdeen Methodist Church on Crown Terrace (8 Crown Terrace, Aberdeen AB11 6HE). From 2pm to 4pm.

There will be time to ask questions and teas/coffees will be provided. Please let us know if you would like to attend so we can track numbers, by emailing Christian Aid at philanthropy@christian-aid.org 

The location has been chosen to encourage travel from outside Aberdeen by train, bus or car (multi-storey parking in South College St.), though car travellers may have some anxiety about both the, by then, very new LEZ and nearby Bus Gates. Another challenge for some may be the longish, steepish stairs from S College St. up to Crown Terrace, so advice on disabled access & parking from someone very familiar with the area would be welcome. The event details are not yet posted on the CA Scotland webpages so, if you have questions, feel free to contact Fionnuala (the Christian Aid staff member leading the planning) direct (using the email in the invitation) or Ian, who will then speak with her.

Presbytery Mailing 22/03/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

We are currently advertising for a Full-Time Presbytery Clerk, details on how to apply can be found here.

For informal enquiries about the role, please contact the Revd. Peter Johnston on 07834 281176 or
PJohnston@churchofscotland.org.uk.

Closing date: 12 noon on Monday, 25 March 2024


There will be a Presbytery Prayer Training Morning held in May, click here to download a save the date poster provided by Rev John Cook.


Rev Dr Robert Smith, the Presbytery's Mission Development Officer has put together a document giving details of the Seeds For Growth scheme, click here to download his cover note and here to download the document.


Iain Hunter of Mannofield Church in Aberdeen has asked that details of ther Balmoral Run be shared by Presbyters as widely as possible. A letter with details and sponsor form and powerpoint slide are available for this purpose.

The important thing is to get this out to congregations and not get it stuck in anyone’s inbox.

Iain also makes a special request of Treasurers – some people might donate via an envelope in the plate and he requests that such donations are forwarded to him at Mannofield Church.


Click here to download Rev Carl Irvine's report on the most recent meeting of Aberdeenshire Education and Children's Services Committee for distribution to congregations in the Aberdeenshire Council area.


Fountainhall Church in Aberdeen are hosting a music event with Instant Neighbour on the 14th of April. Click here or here to download the poster in different formats.

Instant Neighbour was formed 40 years ago by Aberdeen Church of Scotland ministers and is still very much needed as a resource for the local community. They are hoping to raise £40k in this their 40th year to continue to serve the community. Rev Tanya Webster is Presbytery representative on the board of Instant Neighbour and would be happy to talk to anyone about the good work they are doing or fundraising for them.

Presbytery Mailing 15/03/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

We are currently advertising for a Full-Time Presbytery Clerk, details on how to apply can be found here.

For informal enquiries about the role, please contact the Revd. Peter Johnston on 07834 281176 or
PJohnston@churchofscotland.org.uk.

Closing date: 12 noon on Monday, 25 March 2024


It is with sadness that we pass on the news that Graham Douglas, the Presbytery elder for Aberdeen: Stockethill passed away on Monday. A brief tribute from Rev Ian Aitken, minister of Stockethill is below.

Graham Douglas was part of an original group of 12 from which Stockethill New Charge Development grew.  When the charge went to full status in 2013, Graham was ordained as one of its first elders and appointed as Presbytery Elder; a role he continued to fulfil until his death on the 11th March, having been diagnosed with Motor Neurones Disease just 2 months previously.  Graham served on a number of Presbytery committees, twice attended the General Assembly, was diligent at meetings, and took a great interest in the work of Presbytery.  He was especially proud to be representing Stockethill Church which was so close to his heart and where he is greatly loved and will be sorely missed.


It is with sadness that we pass on the news that Rev Martin Prentice, OLM working across Orkney passed away on Wednesday. A brief tribute from Rev Fraser Macnaughton, minister of St Magnus Cathedral and Martin's supervisor, is below, and the funeral will be held on Wednesday 20th March in St Magnus Cathedral.

Martin Prentice was a very hard working and conscientious OLM who worked all over Orkney. Previously a government vet he was ordained in 2014 following training and placement at St Magnus Cathedral where has was also assistant organist. Indeed he used to joke that he could do all of the service if required! He served as interim moderator in several of the isles parishes and was well regarded by all.
He was very thorough and diligent in his preparation of worship and took time to ’study and approve’ himself developing an inclusive theology borne from his ministry experiecnes of meeting and working with all sorts of people.
He was a joy to know and he loved to chew the fat over the latest ecclesiastical controversy and was very stimulating company. His ministry was resolutely supported by his wife Alison, to whom, with the rest of his family, we extend our sympathies but also share our privilege at having known Martin. 


The session clerk of Inverurie West would like to know about any local firms who tune and service church organs as the local ones they have used previously seem to have retired. You can get in contact with them at sessionclerk@inveruriewestchurch.org.


ACT are planning their Walk of Witness for Good Friday and have asked that it be shared to advertise. There is a poster along with various images that can be added to PowerPoints.


Please see info below for This Is Alpha Conference on the 8th of June.

I’ve gathered some info below for you and you can also check out the webpage here too for info https://alpha.org.uk/this-is-alpha

Conference info is - “This is Alpha 24” is being held in Perth on Saturday June 8th with Nicky and Pippa Gumbel as our special guests.  Please join us, as we gather together in the center of Scotland to share in community, feel inspired and be equipped to create spaces for people to encounter Jesus on Alpha. We are passionate about seeing churches across the country run Alpha well so that people can invite their friends, their colleagues, their neighbors and their family to hear about Jesus.

We would love you to book on with your team or maybe even bring others who you feel would be brilliant at running Alpha in your church context. Whether you have ran Alpha multiple times, infrequently or never, we know that there will be something for everyone. From small group dynamics, to running the Alpha weekend/day away or how to you take your Alpha course to the next level. There is going to be loads of content that's relevant for everybody at all stages of running Alpha.  Tickets cost £10 and the booking link is below.

I do hope you and your team can join us on the 8th of June in Perth.

https://tiascotland.eventbrite.co.uk/

Vicky


Church leaders, teachers, children and their families are once again being offered the opportunity to download an accessible and fun retelling of the Easter story in English and Gaelic.

Christian media ministry Go Chatter is again making its Easter video, which uses Lego figures to show the story of Christ’s death and resurrection in an all-ages accessible way, freely available for download by education authorities, Gaelic medium units, schools, homes and churches, as well as families and individuals.

The video comes with an accompanying resource pack including instructions to enable children to build their own version of the empty tomb from commonly available Lego pieces, as well as bi-lingual guidance notes for teachers.

New for 2024, Go Chatter has also introduced an augmented reality Easter trail. This is an interactive hunt that could be placed around the inside or outside of a church, hall or local area, with each location unlocking hidden videos which recreate the Easter story.

The Easter video is part of a series of short films using Lego to bring familiar Bible stories to a young audience.

On its release last year, Roddy John MacLeod, Lord MacLeod of Minginish, convenor of the Church of Scotland Gaelic group, commented: "This video tells the Easter story in a highly imaginative way and it is our prayer that it is watched and enjoyed, whether in school or home, by Gaelic children throughout Scotland."

Both the Gaelic version of the video, which has been made possible thanks to the support of Bòrd na Gàidhlig, and a Scottish accented English language version, can be downloaded at https://gochattervideos.com/lego-easter-story-cos/ along with schema in English and Gaelic enabling children to build a Lego set from the video themselves.


Care for the Family are hosting an event in Aberdeen on the 18th of June regarding children and mental health.

They also have a video version of the content available that might be useful if the event sounds interesting, but getting to something in Aberdeen isn’t possible.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/a-mind-of-their-own-aberdeen-tickets-776824471907aff=MTOabEmails#msdynttrid=eE9WlNqbH5s5jas1pbD8Xq525806Dn_KQnTR9uHeGvg

Presbytery Mailing 08/03/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

We are currently advertising for a Full-Time Presbytery Clerk, details on how to apply can be found here.

For informal enquiries about the role, please contact the Revd. Peter Johnston on 07834 281176 or
PJohnston@churchofscotland.org.uk.

Closing date: 12 noon on Monday, 25 March 2024



We’re hosting a team from Reign Ministries to offer an evening workshop exploring how we do ministry with young people instead of ‘for’ them.

This will be at Pitmedden Church, 7-9pm on Thurs 21st March. All welcome, whether you’ve been working with young people for many years, or just starting out and wondering what it could look like to to do something new.  If you are planning to come, it would be appreciated if you could email me- vstigant@churchofscotland.org.uk or scan the QR code on the flyer.


For those who were unable to make it to Wednesday's Joint Event with Faith Action Programme Leadership Team and Seeds for Growth, the full recorded event is available on the Presbytery Facebook, with just the afternoon session available here and just the evening worship available here.


The latest edition of Presbytery Prayer Points can be found here.

Presbytery Mailing 01/03/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

Please find below a guide to the Crossreach services operating in the Presbytery area, which includes easy links to job vacancies. https://flipbooks.crossreach.org.uk/NENI


Fiona Kendall's talk regarding Mediterranean Hope has been recorded and is available here until Tuesday the 5th March.


The Presbytery Mission Development Officer Rev Dr Robert Smith has been made aware that he has listed an incorrect phone number, his correct mobile number is 07563 878741, please update any records that you hold.


We have been asked to circulate a job opportunity with the University of St Andrews Chaplaincy. It is for a two-year part-time role for an ordained Assistant Chaplain.

https://www.vacancies.st-andrews.ac.uk/Vacancies/W/1660/0/420584/889/assistant-chaplain-ad2674hm

Presbytery Mailing 23/02/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

A request from the Aberdeen Chorus of Sweet Adelines, a women’s a cappella chorus.

We have a relatively new member who is studying sound engineering at Aberdeen College, and she is keen to use her skills to help the chorus.

We were wondering if, in the light of the many unions of churches etc taking place around the city (and wider presbytery) if you knew of any who might now have surplus sound equipment they would be looking to either donate to a good cause (we are a registered charity) or sell on for a reasonable sum.

There will be some here from Drumoak and Durris now they have united with us here in Culter but the buildings are still going to be in use for a wee while, so we are not yet ready to dispose of what they have.

Anything such as a mixing desk, mic stands, cables, microphones etc would be put to good use for us to use recording rehearsals and to use to improve our amplification for performances.


NENI Presbytery, along with the Faith Action Programme Leadership Team and the Seeds for Growth Committee will be hosting an event for Presbyters and local leaders of congregational life on the 6th of March, starting at 2pm and running until 9pm. The event will be hybrid, with the on-site portion being hosted by Fountainhall at the Cross Church in Aberdeen. Please promote this event to your congregations. Click here to download a flyer for the event and click here to be taken to the Eventbrite page to book your free ticket.

This Roadshow event will be part of a series of opportunities around the country where the new Faith Action Leadership Team aim to interact with local views on the opportunities and challenges facing the Church of Scotland right now. Tommy MacNeil, Convener, Faith Action Programme Leadership Team and Neil Glover from the Seeds for Growth fund (which supports new expressions of church) are looking forward to engaging with the local church at a time of great change. This is our opportunity to contribute and to be heard.

Please make it a priority to attend at least part of this event; and invite those you think might also want to attend. There will be two sessions: an afternoon event with speakers, questions and answers, and a separate evening worship event. If you can only manage one of the sessions that is fine. But please consider registering for this important event.


Milestone Church in Orkney are hosting Basia Mindewicz (Biog below) from Edinburgh School of Icon Painting. She has agreed to come to Orkney and run her 5 day course which Rev Moira Taylor-Wintersgill has done twice! She was hoping that folks could learn about it as it really is a great chance to spend a week creating something really special:

Icon Painting Workshop – 19th to 23rd March 2024 10:30 am - 4:00 pm, Milestone Kirk. 5-Day Mary Magdalene Course. “For this course, we chose an icon of Mary Magdalene. We wanted to paint more icons of women saints. We think it is important. Through the artwork and the meditative process of creating this icon, you will be able to reflect on her story and how it can inspire you.” This 5-day intensive icon painting workshop is designed for students of all abilities. No previous experience is required. The course aims to help you understand the tradition of icon painting through studying masterpieces and through their inspiration to create your own icon. Over 5 days of intensive work, students will go through all stages of icon painting, which will be an excellent introduction and experience for using the egg tempera technique. For more info or to book follow the link: 5-day Mary Magdalene course - Edinburgh School of Icon Painting (edinburghiconpainting.org)

Basia Mindewicz Biography:

Basia was born in 1978 in Warsaw and is an icon painter and contemporary artist. She was trained in Poland in the College dedicated to iconography. She was studying ancient techniques of egg tempera and gold gilding. For many years she has been mainly working in a very traditional style learning the icon language. When she came to Edinburgh, she started exploring other “languages” searching for more personal and contemporary ways of depicting parallel reality. Her artistic development reveals the truth about who we are and what we need to become whole. Icon painting as a spiritual practice grows in silence and stillness.

Basia Graduated from The Maria Grzegorzewska Academy of Special Education, MA and College of Iconography (Policealne Studium Ikonograficzne) in Bielsk Podlaski in 2008.She has been working for a significant icon painting workshop in Poland and organized many private workshops and residential courses.

Anyone who is interested should book through the link above.


The Tron Church in Glasgow are holding a media seminar over the 12th and 13th of April, click here to download a video about the event, and here to go to the website for further details.

Presbytery Mailing 16/02/2024

Please find below a number of relevant pieces of information for distribution and consideration by Presbyters.

NENI Presbytery, along with the Faith Action Programme Leadership Team and the Seeds for Growth Committee will be hosting an event for Presbyters and local leaders of congregational life on the 6th of March, starting at 2pm and running until 9pm. The event will be hybrid, with the on-site portion being hosted by Fountainhall at the Cross Church in Aberdeen. Please promote this event to your congregations. Click here to download a flyer for the event and click here to be taken to the Eventbrite page to book your free ticket.


Please find below a list of the upcoming Safeguarding training sessions to be delivered via zoom:

Introductory Safeguarding Training

Advanced Safeguarding Training

Trustee Safeguarding Training

Please use the links provided to register. Upon registration, you will receive a confirmation email with details on how to join the meeting.

Your commitment to safeguarding is highly appreciated, and these training sessions play a crucial role in creating a safe and secure environment within our community.

Thank you for your diligence in ensuring the safety and well-being of our congregations.

Best Regards,

Natasha Hepburn, Presbytery Safeguarding Contact


An AV Day in Lossiemouth is scheduled for the 2nd of March, click here to see an picture with details.


Aberdeen Interfaith has asked that we share information about a Language Cafe event in Fraserburgh as they are looking for volunteers to assist with those sessions. Details below.

I'm getting in touch  asking if you would be interested in volunteering for a Language Cafe in Fraserburgh. It would be good to meet up in person and discuss this. If you would prefer to attend rather than lead sessions, then please come along too, as we can discuss the type of language cafe you would like to see and be involved in. 

Wilfred has kindly allowed us to meet at the Fountain of Love church on Cross Street, the same venue that we had the You, Me and a Cup of Tea event.

I hope you can meet us there at 5pm on Thursday the 22nd February.


If you have any secondary school aged young people in your congregation and have wondered about taking them away to a youth event in the summer, this might be of interest.

Magnitude is a festival organised by SU Scotland. It’s happening on the 20th-24th July at Lendrick Muir, near Kinross. Magnitude is for young people of secondary school age to explore their faith, worship together and have a lot of fun doing so.

We know there are some churches who would love to take their young people away, but the prospect of organising this for a small group is a bit daunting. The CofS are hosting a ‘village’, so you can camp with and get to know groups from other churches and they’ll organise the catering, a marquee to gather in and a hoody for £35/pp on top of the festival ticket cost (£159-£195 depending on when it’s booked). This is being coordinated by Suzi Farrant, the national Youth and Young Adults Development Worker

If you’d like to find out more, they’re running a couple of info sessions on Thurs 15th Feb 8-9pm and Tues 20th Feb 10:30-11:30am- same content just at different times.

Zoom ID: 858 4455 9424

Passcode: 302003


Dear Presbytery Colleagues,

If you have visited Shetland before, then you know how beautiful it is. And if you haven't, it is surely on your bucket list. But we know how expensive it is to get here, and how hard it can be to find holiday lets. So you might be interested in this offer from Shetland Church of Scotland, which will at least sort out your accommodation.

We are always looking for pulpit supply , especially around the summertime. Meanwhile, we have a fully furnished manse in Lerwick, the ground floor of which also serves as our office. We offer this manse to colleagues on a self-catering basis for almost free - the only cost is taking two Sunday morning services for every week you stay! This offer is open to all ministers,  deacons, lay preachers, and MDS workers who are accustomed to leading worship. We do not expect you to do any other church duties, so the rest of the week would be yours. However, you will need to fund your own travel, and you will also most likely need a car on Shetland, whether you bring one on the ferry or hire one while you are here.

The manse has two double bedrooms and two single bedrooms, with an additional sofa bed in the living room, so you are welcome to bring family or friends. Friendly dogs are also welcome.  Please note that all the accommodation is upstairs, except for the kitchen/dining room and a shower room. We supply sheets and towels. There is no television, but we have good wifi, and plenty books and games.

So if this appeals for either a holiday or a retreat space - or somewhere to write that dissertation at last - then please do get in touch with me and/or  our Administrator Frances Richardson at the Parish Office. We'll be happy to answer any questions you have, and to work out dates that might suit. We do have some dates booked already, but still plenty of spaces left.

Blessings,

Fran Henderson

Shetland Church of Scotland


World Day of Prayer is coming up soon and there will be a number of Ecumenical Services held in Aberdeen City, click here or here for posters with details.


"Faith in Scotland's Constitutional Future" is a project of the School of Critical Studies / Theology & Religious Studies at the University of Glasgow, led by Professor Heather Walton and the Rev Dr Doug Gay. This is an ecumenical, non-partisan and politically/constitutionally neutral research project exploring how folk in churches relate faith to constitutional questions in Scotland.

As part of this project, twelve regional events for church members/adherents are taking place around Scotland. There will be an event at Kirkwall East Church (King Street Halls) on Saturday 9th March between 12:00 and 15:00. You and the members of your congregation(s) are cordially invited and very welcome to come. Admission is free. The organisers are very grateful to the Rev Julia Meason and the congregation of Kirkwall East Church for helping to facilitate this.

After video presentations from four Christians prominent in Scottish politics (two pro-Union and two pro-Independence) the discussion will involve listening respectfully to one another’s positions and arguments. This will aim towards relating this difficult and emotive topic to the common Christian faith of participants.
Click here for a poster for church noticeboards.


You are welcome at an antisemitism briefing for Christian leaders with the Board of Deputies, the Community Security Trust, and the Union of Jewish Students. Full details and a registration form are here: https://www.tickettailor.com/events/thecouncilofchristiansandjews/1141066


FAITH IN OLDER PEOPLE IN COLLABORATION WITH THE ANNA CHAPLAINCY IS HOLDING AN EVENT ON WEDNESDAY 20TH MARCH 2024 BY ZOOM 10-12.30am

Practical approaches for spiritual care among older people- the potential of Anna Chaplaincy

There will be small group discussion and information about the specific training to become an Anna Chaplain.

Confirmed speaks include:

  • Rt Rev Sally Foster-Fulton, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland
  • Professor John Swinton, University of Aberdeen, Chair of Divinity and Religious Studies
  • Dr Donald Macaskill, CEO Scottish Care

BOOKING FEE £20.00 - TO BOOK YOUR PLACE PLEASE CLICK here