News from the Diocesan Office

To: All Clergy, Lay Representatives, Treasurers, and Vestry Secretaries – and for passing on to your congregations…

From John Mitchell, Diocesan Secretary

July 2019

News from the Diocesan Office

In May, I sent what was intended to be the first of a quarterly update from the Diocesan Office (if you didn’t receive this, but would like to receive a back-copy, please contact me at the email address at end of this update). However, there are some new items to pass on, so this is being sent a little sooner than planned. As before, feel free to print and place on your noticeboard, or extract anything for your magazine…

Election of our new Bishop, and attendance at 27th July Synod

As previously advised by the Primus, Bishop Mark, there will be a conclusion of the current stage of the election process on Saturday 27th July at Holy Trinity and St Barnabas, Paisley, when Clergy, Lay Representatives (or their Alternates) can engage with him and those other members of the College of Bishops in attendance before they go on to elect our new Bishop later in the year. We are taking the apologies list as previously advised to us, but please let us know (in writing or by email) if there are any additions or alterations to be made by contacting:

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Welcome to Greyfriars, Kirkcudbright and St Mary's, Gatehouse of Fleet

Greyfriars and St. Mary’s is a linked charge of the Scottish Episcopal Church in the diocese of Glasgow and Galloway. The church in Kirkcudbright dates back to Medieval times, and in Gatehouse of Fleet to 1840. We hope you will find in these pages welcome, inspiration and information.

Pentecost & Trinity

We don’t go around the streets of Gatehouse of Fleet and Kirkcudbright wishing each other a Happy Pentecost in the way that we wish each other a Happy Christmas and Happy Easter. Christian churches in the UK are much more shy about God as the Holy Spirit than our fellow Christians elsewhere.  In churches in Greece and Cyprus, the worshipping congregation joins the crowds in the streets joyfully greeting one another. Church and community are one. Even in the Netherlands, and the Dutch are similarly conservative, Pentecost, or Pinterfest, lasts two days, and there are often family get- togethers.

The first Pentecost came at a highly significant time in the life of the early church. The first followers of Jesus had all gathered together. The first fears of the fearful knock on the door, and arrest by the Roman authorities or temple police; had subsided. But now they were in a sorry state; weak depressed, lonely, confused. Jesus had miraculously come back from the dead, but had now with the Ascension returned to heaven. The scene is set for us in the Acts of the Apostles When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house. Not only had God manifested Himself in the power, discernment, and comfort of the Holy Spirit, this was also the birth- day of the churc .

Following on from this, the bed-rock of the Church’s faith is the belief in the doctrine of the Trinity. God the Father Who loves us, God the Son who died for us, and God the Holy Spirit who enlightens and empowers us. Put another way, the three great festivals of the Church; Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost. Three good bases for life itself.

Stephen D. Hazlett , Rector

Churches Trust Gathering

Mike Ashmore, Richard Glass, Barbara Hawkesford and Andy Courtnadge recently represented St Mary’s and Greyfriars at a social gathering of the Churches Trust in Bothwell Parish, near Glasgow, in the presence of HRH Princess Anne to whom they were presented. The Churches Conservation Trust were particularly generous in helping fund our stained-glass windows repairs in Gatehouse.

Episcopal Elections Diocese of Glasgow & Galloway

Following the recent special synods  in St. Mary’s Cathedral Glasgow, as no candidate received the clear majority required for a successful appointment, the process continues. The Rector along with our two Lay Representatives continue with the process of discerning the future of episcopal oversight in the diocese of Glasgow & Galloway. We will keep our two churches updated, and pray for the right person to be elected as our next bishop.                                         

Our Church

The Scottish Episcopal Church is a member of the worldwide Anglican Communion, with 70 million members in 163 countries. It is the third largest Christian church in Scotland, and is in full communion with the Church of England, the Church of Ireland, and the Church in Wales. Our Christian belief is centred on the Holy Scriptures and the Sacraments of baptism and the Holy Communion. We live out these core beliefs through worship, prayer, and Christian living.

Both churches have an active role in our communities, sharing God’s love in ecumenical partnership with other churches. We give of our means and talents to the greater purpose of God’s work and the needs of our fellow humans locally, nationally, and internationally. We are listening churches, not just to those who attend our worship, but to all who find need of us, whether through baptism, marriage, illness or other pastoral needs, and bereavement. The Rector can be contacted at anytime.

Our congregations are enthusiastic, caring, and warm and hope you will be able to share with us as we celebrate our Christian life together.  

May the Lord be with you, and may His peace be yours today and always.