«St Andrew’s and St George’s West June 2015 Magazine June 2015 A Place of Hope – Ian Gilmour 3-4 Worshipping God at St Andrew’s & St ...»
Peter MacDonald Edinburgh is well-placed to play a major role in this process with a strong Interfaith explores building 2 group and the annual Middle Eastern Christian community 3 Festival of Peace and Spirituality. All are welcome 1 See https://tanenbaum.org/peacemakers-in-action-network/meet-the-peacemakers/imam-muhammad-ashafa-pastorjames-wuye/ 2 See http://www.eifa.org.uk 3 See http://eicsp.org 20 Good News from the Amnesty Undercroft Group On 28 May 2015 Moses Akatugba was pardoned and released.
Moses was arrested in Nigeria at 16, tortured into a confession, sentenced to death and imprisoned for 10 years. After a long campaign by Amnesty and human rights supporters worldwide, his pardon and release was finally announced on 28 May.
We collected signatures for Amnesty’s Stop Torture campaign at Heart and Soul in 2014 and again at our pre-election city centre event on 17 April 2015, where local politicians came to show their support for human rights and signed the petition to free Moses. Moses sent a message to Amnesty supporters 'I am overwhelmed. I thank Amnesty International and their activists for the great support that made me a conqueror in this situation. Amnesty International members and activist are my Heroes. I want to assure them, that this great effort they have show to me will not be in vain, by the special grace of God I will live up to their expectation.
'I promise to be a human rights activist, to fight for others.' The Amnesty Undercroft Group meets monthly at 12.15 on The Undercroft Café on the last Monday of every month.
Everyone is welcome to drop in and join us.
21 Plenty to keep us busy – Malawi Update Alison Campbell Dr Clare Shakespeare, daughter of Dr Ruth Shakespeare who is our missionary partner and Medical Director of Mulanje Mission Hospital, ran the Edinburgh marathon on Sunday 31 May to raise funds for new born baby equipment.
Clare works in Obstetrics in Bristol, after 2 years in Mulanje as medical officer in charge – often the only doctor apart from her mother. She ran with her brother in law, Simon Durrant, who is a Church of England minister in Devon.
On Friday 29 May Clare was in the Undercroft to update us on the position in Mulanje, especially after the bad floods in Dr Clare Shakespeare January. The damage in Southern Malawi after running the was enormous, with bridges washed Edinburgh Marathon away, 3,000 latrines destroyed and in aid of Mulanje thousands of houses, 22 churches and Mission Hospital.
worst of all the maize crop which means the hospital is seeing severe malnutrition among children.
However, progress has been made over the past 9 months, especially in providing an independent water supply for the hospital, improved sewerage, and improved palliative care – which is so important in a population ravaged by HIV/Aids (1 in 5 people, and much higher in the prison population) and TB, and which can hugely improve quality of life for sufferers.
You can also give any donation to minister Ian Gilmour, James McNeill, Mary Margaret Scott, Ruth Forrester or Alison Campbell, to be passed on.
Donations should be made to the Church of Scotland and gift aid is eligible.
The Fellowship Lunch on Sunday 7 June will also support our Malawi partners.
23 Christian Aid 2015 - A Note from the Help Desk Judy Chapman Once again I would like to thank the hundreds of volunteers who helped to raise another magnificent sum for Christian Aid. While most of our helpers are retired it was great to see a number of children involved. Geographically, while the majority of those helping came from Edinburgh we also had help from other areas of Scotland, England, mainland Europe, and the USA.
On Sunday 14th June, at I continue to be amazed how people the 11 am Service, appear when most needed. Many Professor Jeanne Bell will thanks to those who responded to the speak on behalf of all who special appeals for Thursday evening, helped to make the 2015 some coming straight from work, and Sale and present the also those who appeared to help clean cheque from the Sale to the Church on Saturday 16th (you're the Revd Kathy Galloway, forgiven for not indicating this on your Head of Christian Aid help form!).
I avoid mentioning names in order not to be seen thanking some people more Jeanne is a former elder than others. However I do want to thank and choir member of St Andrew’s and St George’s some people who have made outstanding contributions in the past but Church and she convenes the Medical Books section were unable to help this year owing to of the Sale.
ill-health. They are, in alphabetical order, Eileen Mackintosh (History and Biography), Tessa Ransford (Literature / Poetry), Evelyn Scott (Hardback Fiction) and Liz White (Scottish). Sadly we also lost Jim Smith, who died during the Sale. Jim did so much for many years as part of the Cellar Team and also was valuable member of the Saturday cleaning team.
I hope everybody enjoyed themselves and felt appreciated. Most people are now enjoying a well-earned rest apart from Mary Davidson, the Convenor of the Sale, who never stops. Since the Sale finished, with the help of her secretarial team, she has been busy writing letters of thanks which you will receive shortly. Judy Chapman 24 From the archives: a 1975 report from the Evening News shows Arthur Hope at the second Christian Aid Book Sale.
25 Notes from the Kirk Session The Session met on Wed 27 May. A highlight was a report on the General Assembly from Jack Thompson who had been our Commissioner.
• The boiler replacement (with accompanying removal of asbestos) is proceeding well and within budget. Total cost will be £80,618.
• We have been approached by the Presbytery to become a “Supervising Congregation” for a Presbytery Mission Initiative concerning Albany Deaf Church. Presbytery Mission Initiatives are a new system in the kirk for bringing people together with a specific interest or aim, either in a geographical location or in a network – so not a congregation in its own right. The Deaf Church would use our building and we would be responsible for its management. As this is a new scheme, the Session agreed to set up a small group to take this forward. Meanwhile Albany will worship in our church on occasional Sunday afternoons.
• The Session took a very difficult decision with much discussion, to take the phone mast rental into general funds and to set up a new Mission Fund with all other money left to us for charitable purposes.
The Session agreed that it had an obligation to attempt to balance the books, and we intend to use the Mission Fund in a more organised way to support external causes.
• On Together, funding was approved for the “Pilgrim for an hour” project.
• The congregation is asked for its comments on the website, which is being reviewed by the Communications Group.
On a less happy note, Katie McNeill announced her resignation as Joint Session Clerk in order to give more volunteering time to Workplace Chaplaincy. No doubt she will continue to be just as active in the congregation!
26 Zest for Life In March we introduced through ‘Zest for Life’ the latest stage in our initiative to ensure that our income as a congregation matches both our present needs and an expanding role in representing the church in a city centre which is itself developing a higher and higher profile.
The presentations and video showed we have much going on and much in the pipeline, but all the hard work and plans must have a secure financial base.
If you have already reviewed your own commitment a big thank-you; if you have still to get round to it please try to do so as soon as you can whether you contribute through covenanted direct debit or in other ways.
To make sure that our message reaches as many members as possible there will be further communications in June and July.
We worship and work here in a fast-moving and stimulating environment where to stand still is to go backwards, so let’s make sure we meet the Challenge.
James McNeill, Stewardship Convener Boys’ Brigade Silver Band march past St Andrew’s and St George’s West on Assembly Sunday, after playing at the 11am service 27 From the church manager’s desk Office contacts: Sophie Chalmers, our Administration Assistant, now has a separate contact email address which is admin(at)stagw(dot)org(dot)uk. This should be used for booking, diary and accounts related queries and general admin. Joyce Garland, info(at)stagw(dot)org(dot)uk continues to look after congregational matters, service arrangements and is in general the oracle of the office.
However, this is a general guideline for your information and must not prevent anyone from contacting the office whenever they need to.
Labelling of stored items: The movement of items around the church before and after the book sale highlighted the necessity of labelling items stored by congregation groups; it is possible that items in unlabelled bags and boxes were included in the sale. Also, when the inventory check was carried out this week a considerable number of unmarked bags and boxes were discovered - the ownership of some still being a mystery. It is essential, therefore, that if there is a need to store items they are boxed and labelled - and a note left in the church office to explain where they have been put, please. I have put a plastic wallet containing labels, post-its and pen inside the ‘Keys and Leaflets’ cupboard next to the locker room.
Congregational Photo: If you would like a copy of the Congregational Photo, please sign the sheet in the vestibule, or let the office know, by 30 June. The photos will be professionally printed, A5 in size (21cm x 15cm) Cost will be 50p per copy.
Jean Howard, Church Manager Edinburgh Presbytery World Mission Fair Polwarth Parish Church Sat 20 June 10am-noon St Andrew’s and St George’s West has been invited to take a stall at this event to highlight our partnership in Malawi. Come along and support our team, meet representatives of the World Mission Council and learn what other congregations are doing throughout in partnerships throughout the world 28 Congregational Picnic Sunday 14 June from 1.30pm Our first annual Congregational Picnic will be on Sunday 14 June from 1:30pm at Dalkeith Park House. Bring and share your food and drink (crockery, cutlery and glasses available). Please sign up on the sheet in the vestibule to give an indication of numbers. Directions for travel by bus or car are available Evergreens Summer Outing Wednesday, 24th June. We are going to the Botanic Gardens, meeting at 2pm at the John Hope Gate (the West Gate) on Arboretum Place. Tea has been booked for 3pm in the Restaurant in the John Hope Building. Several buses stop near the East Gate on Inverleith Road, but the tourist bus which has gone to the West Gate over the last two summers is not so far running this year. Lifts will be available from the Church at 1.40pm, but please let Ann Hindle or Veronica Crerar know in advance if you would like a lift.
We need your stories - Last chance!
To all members of the former St Andrew’s Church and St Andrew’s and St George’s Church: From September 2015, an exhibition in the sanctuary will tell our many visitors about this church – the building; its history; and our present-day activities. Part of the exhibition will be a book of congregational memories, and for this we need your help.
There will be a section on weddings in the church. If you have a family wedding photograph featuring the church, please bring it to us and we will scan and return it. Do you have photos or memories of a particular event, person or organisation which you are willing to share? We would love to have more stories – serious or funny.
Please send your stories and photos to us or leave them in the church office for us. If you don’t want to write your story yourself, get in touch with us and we will transcribe it for you.
Mary Godden Barbara Ramsay
Bigger than ever, Just Festival is celebrating its 15th year with over 300 events and performances from the 7th-31st August. Open to everyone, the launch is free to attend and will showcase tasters of what the Festival has to offer. Meet new Festival Director, Beata Skobodzinska, and some of this year's artists.
And grab your copy of the programme.
Festival Fringe Performer Accommodation Sought: Just Festival 2015 will include a new musical from Soweto and Just would like to see whether accommodation for at least some of the 12 performers might be available through the Together Congregations. The performers will be aged between about 18 and 50 and all will have good English.
Accommodation would be sought for periods of 7 nights between 1st August and 2nd September. A light breakfast would be appropriate but no other meals are required. Performers would be required to return to accommodation no later than 10pm. If you think that you may be able to help, please contact the Festival Director, Beata Skobodzińska, at beata(at)justjust(dot)co(dot)uk
Cabaret & Canapés Friday 19th at June, 7.30pm Join the students from the choir for an informal evening of light Jazz music to fundraise for the forthcoming choir trip to Germany.
The evening will feature performances from vocal ensemble Vintage Twelve, the Banyuls Saxophone Quartet, Duo Aulos & many more. Refreshments provided. Bring your friends and family!
Tickets £8 (£5) on the door St Andrew’s &St George’s West at Festival Time 9-30 August 2015 Three weeks of classical, jazz, opera and world music – spoken word – all curated, organised and staffed by volunteers here at St Andrew’s and St George’s West.
Pick up a copy in the church or read it on our website at www.stagw.org.uk/music. Postal booking for tickets is open now, or you can book online at www.edfringe.com 31 General Assembly 2015 People make the assembly Jack Thompson reports The General Assembly Blue Book runs to more than 400 pages.
Packed full of facts, figures, overtures and deliverances, it indicates the range and importance of the work in which the Church of Scotland is involved. But it only comes alive when the convenor of each committee gives their report, and the debate on that report begins.
What caught my attention most at Assembly was not the reports themselves; nor even the sometimes highly charged debates, but initially at least, the people, sights and sounds around me. Here are just a few of them.