A word from Diane

A word from Diane

This is our first newsletter this year and I wish to begin by thanking the many volunteers who helped at the additional services and concerts over the Christmas period.  It was great to welcome so many people to the Old Kirk and to share the Christmas story with them.

Thanks also for the very generous donations for Blythswood Care Shoebox Appeal, Bethany Christian Care Night Shelters and Storehouse Foodbank.  Teenzone used some of the proceeds raised from their soup lunches to donate presents for teenagers to the local Salvation Army Gift Appeal.  The Salvation Army helped over 100 young people in Bo’ness who otherwise would not have received Christmas presents.  The Kirk Session is concerned about poverty in our community and are looking at ways in which we can help particularly during school holidays and also by working with agencies like Christians Against Poverty.

Churches throughout Scotland have been facing a decrease in attendances and income and we are very fortunate that there has been a bit of an increase in attendance at our services and also at Messy Church which now meets monthly and at our weekly Youth Group.  All Kirk Sessions were  asked by the General Assembly to hold a special meeting to discuss the future and after a very interesting discussion we submitted our response.  We are always looking at new ways to spread the gospel and serve our community and would welcome any comments or suggestions.  We will shortly be taking part in a Local Church Review which replaces the old 5 yearly visits from Presbytery and all members of the congregation will be encouraged to take part and give their views on the last five years and for the future.

I recently attended the “Re-Imagining Church Conference” organised by Sanctuary First and was encouraged and inspired to hear what’s happening in other churches and the challenges ahead.  All churches and parishes are different and we must all use the gifts which God has given us to find new ways to “be church” and serve the Lord and our community.  I would encourage everyone who has access to the internet to follow Sanctuary First and I hope you will find their short daily reflections helpful.

Diane

Old Kirk