Christian Meditation

During this time of Lockdown, which  will possibly last not 6 months but a year,  we can all become anxious. Often the anxiety is due to something we have buried  away in the past  and now it has time  to bubble up again. This may be accompanied by physical  symptoms like lack of sleep,  a racing heart or a sense of foreboding. The daily practice of meditation  can help us all to reduce anxiety levels and find a temporary  or lasting peace. Thanks to WCCM  a Christian meditation group, you can access this now. All you need do is click here and listen to Father Laurence Freeman.OSB.

Meditation for Children

Many schools are now teaching reflective  practices   to children,  sometimes  called  mindfulness. Schools do this as it helps reduce anxiety and enables children to learn and remember more easily. Here we encourage Christian Meditation for all ages. This link is a testimony from some children


Faith Action Plan

This is the plan for the Church of Scotland’s activities , as put forward by the Assembly Trustees recently.

As the Church’s vision statement indicates – we are a Church which seeks to inspire the people of Scotland and beyond with the Good News of Jesus Christ. So, the critical elements of our Faith Action Plan are:

• Worship – continuously developing to reflect the changing needs of society
• Witness – focusing on priorities, new ways of working and active stewardship
• Nurture – faith formation & discipleship
• Serving communities – supporting the local church and beyond. Partnering where we cannot make a significant impact or it is beyond our reach, capability or affordability. Collaboration & relationship building.
• Training – a single integrated faith training programme with a clear focus on targeted selection, inspirational leadership for worship, witness, nurture, service and impact

Presbyteries and Kirk Sessions , along with all Members will be working to find new and innovative ways of implementing these goals over the coming year.

Challenge Poverty Week

During the month of October we are encouraged by the Scottish Churches to reflect on our responses to poverty, both personally and at a Church level.  Many people from all the Churches give their support to poverty minimising activities like Food Banks. Others help lobby their MPs and MSPs to address the needs of low income families and single people of all ages  living alone. For further information please follow the online  link:  https://www.challengepoverty.net/ Please also watch our Church Service for 04 October 2020 which talks about this topic.

Church Open

St Leonard’s Church will hold their first service 1030am Sunday 20 September with Track and Trace.
Subsequently on 2nd and 4th Sundays starting 11 October. You can view our calendar here.

Dallas Kirk – Have their first service at 12 noon on Sunday 20 September with Track and Trace.
Subsequently on 1st and 4th Sundays starting on 4th October

Lockdown Update

Our three Kirks are still closed until we can muster  all the safety requirements  which are legal. All three Kirk sessions are due to make an updated decision 7-9th September.   Also, St Leonards still has builders materials blocking a critical fire exit as I write this. I would like to see some form of Sunday worship resumed before the end of September if the Kirk Sessions feel they can organise deep cleans before and after, as well as monitor facemasks and hand cleaning at the doors with a register for “contact and trace”.  We are also obliged  to conduct a deep clean before and after services,  which will be seated and void of Hymn singing. Meeting  for teas after the service will not be possible until future notice. However,  we do plan  to continue with weekly online  services , during  which  people have been able to sing hymns  at home. Donald Prentice ( Minister)


Pastoral Care and Telephone “Visiting”

Donald loves the fellowship of a phone call and also your news so please keep in touch. The Minister  has been conducting “Telephone Visiting”  during Lockdown. If you have not  received a call and would like one please contact us here to arrange a call. If you already have the phone number then please feel free to call. This is still a time to be careful but we can  keep in good fellowship via email and telephone.

Blog & Online  Services – will continue even when we return to partial  services in the Kirk building. This is to enable  anyone who is unable to attend for whatever reason to take part in worship. This will be almost the same service as will be held in Church. Please help anyone you know who has a computer or tablet, to access the services online. Simply type stleonardschurchforres.org  in the browser box,  then click on the Worship menu on the top line or visit our YouTube channel. If anyone without a computer, who has a DVD player would like the current or previous services, John Carson our Reader/ Elder will deliver a dvd recording to you.  This replaces the cassette tape / cd  home service.

Virtually Keswick

KESWICK CONVENTION 2020 – Online

The Keswick Convention is this year having 5 days of “Virtually Keswick” – 27th to 31st July, which should be worth a look. The theme is “Hope” and the Bible readings are from Psalms.

The morning session is at 10am, there are seminars at 11:15am and the evening session is at 8pm. There are also sessions for children and youth. The speakers are always first class, it’s all free, and you can watch as much or as little as you like.

Full details at – https://vkc.keswickministries.org/

Lockdown Rules – Update

Phase 3 Update.

Due to the list of requirements by ScotGOV and with the majority of our office bearers still “guarding”, we are unable to open the Church buildings for Congregational worship, so our Online worship services will continue as the new normal for Sunday worship.

The Kirk Sessions of Dallas, Rafford and St Leonards are looking for ways to open for funeral services but these will have to be carefully co-ordinated, recording attendees, cleaning before and after and with seat spacing. Other risk analyses and health and safety issues have to be achieved and recorded first. Hymn singing is also not permitted until further notice.

The situation may change by early September when the Kirk Sessions hope to be in a position to open the Church buildings. BUT… remember the Church is not the building! It is the people of God called out to serve in the community.

May God bless you in your mission.

Rev Donald Prentice

The Guild

The Church of Scotland Guild or simply The Guild (formerly known as the Woman’s Guild), is a movement within the Church of Scotland.

Historically it was, and often in practice it is, an exclusively woman’s movement. It has groups, organised at a congregational level, in most of the parishes of Scotland. The aim of the movement is “to invite and encourage both woman and men to commit their lives to Jesus Christ and to enable them to express their faith in worship, prayer, and action”. The associated motto is “Whose I am, and Whom I serve’ 

St Leonard’s Church Guild

The Church of Scotland Guild is so much more than it appears at a glance.  Over the years, the guild has taken great risks in its work, often leading the church into ideas and service that it may otherwise have found too challenging or even too frightening to pursue.  Here are  some of our projects and themes, the building of a girls school in Kalimpong in 1888,  working with alcoholic women in early 20th century , sending gifts to German women after the war, post-natal depression, domestic abuse, challenging apartheid, addressing human trafficking and many, many more.

Fellowship is probably the main reason why most people attend Guild Meetings. Yes, we go to learn more about the Bible, to pray, to worship and to learn from speakers but mostly it is because of the friendship and support we enjoy with other members.

We have had lots of fun and interesting talks eg project Uganda, Moray libraries, Quiz (with members from other guilds), different crafts, Salvation Army and afternoons of entertainment by members.  The Guild members are also invited to different guilds for evening/afternoons of entertainment.  We also have a Scottish night which is a great success and everyone seems to enjoy, Christmas Party with the ladies all doing the Hokey Cokey and we have out usual Summer Lunch or Afternoon Tea at a local hotel. So I am sure there would be something of interest there for everyone.  New members are always made very welcome.  We have had several men visiting but no men have ventured to join the Guild. All are welcome, if you are interested in joining or would like more information then please use our contact form.

June Machray  Guild President

Church Access For Prayer

Scottish Government “Phase 2” rules for places of worship – allow individual access for prayer from 22 June 2020.
As most of our Office bearers are themselves still isolating, access to the Church can be arranged by appointment by contacting the Minister through our contact form.

Any further opening of the Church and or Hall will be subject to Scottish Government ruling and further decision by the Kirk Session of each Church.