MONDAY 24 DECEMBER – THE BLESSING OF THE CRIB AND CHRISTINGLE SERVICE
SUNDAY 23 DECEMBER – THE SUNDAY SCHOOL NATIVITY PLAY
SUNDAY 2 DECEMBER – ADVENT SUNDAY
AN ECUMENICAL SERVICE OF READINGS AND HYMNS FOR ADVENT took place at 7.00pm, attended by approximately 50 people from different congregations in the area, who braved the cold and frosty weather. Readings from scripture and of poetry were shared between the different denominations and interspersed with seasonal hymns. Afterwards, wine and nibbles, provided by the Catholic congregation, were enjoyed in the Hall, with opportunity to socialise.
INAUGURAL MEETING OF “CHURCH AND ACADEMY IN THE FIELDS:
“TO HELL WITH YOUR METAPHYSICS” – GOD IS “NOT POWER, BUT POWER OF LOVE” – This was the title of a talk given by Revd John Martin from Sandgreen, and held at lunchtime on 26 November in the Maxwell Rooms of St Peter’s Church, Dalbeattie. It was the first gathering of an ecumenical group which hopes to meet several times a year, the idea of local Roman Catholic, Presbyterian and Episcopalian clergy, and inspired by the ‘Church and the Academy’ monthly seminar meetings in Glasgow. About 40 people arrived for the meeting – including Bishop Gregor – from many traditions and from an area covering Dumfries to Kirkcudbright, and there was a lively exchange of ideas afterwards.
John’s subject was the radical twentieth century vicar Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy – ‘Woodbine Willie’ – whose honest and human theology was fired and developed when responding to need in the slums, and then as a padre in the trenches of the First World War, and expressed so naturally in his poetry. A transcript of John’s talk, a distillation of material he had prepared for an MA dissertation at St Andrew’s University is available to read on: http://md.glasgow.anglican.org/2012/11/church-and-academy-in-the-fields/
The next meeting is planned for Tues 29 January 2013, same time and venue, when Fr William McFadden will speak on “Vatican II – a Council of Reform or a Council of Continuity?”
SUNDAY 7 OCTOBER 2012: HARVEST THANKSGIVING
Images of some of the beautiful arrangements in the Church:
SUNDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2012 – ST NINIAN’S PATRONAL SERVICE AND ANOTHER FAREWELL
Tim and Shirley Tuke are moving south to be nearer their family. The Rector thanked them both for their contributions to the life of St Ninian’s, including Tim’s period of service as one-time Secretary to Galloway Regional Council and Shirley’s involvement with the Mothers’ Union for many years. The Rector presented them with a photo-montage to remind them of St Ninian’s, and Mrs Jenny Spence presented Shirley with a gift from the Mothers’ Union.
A CONGREGATIONAL LUNCH was served in the Hall following the Service to mark St Ninian’s Day and also as a thank you to the Hall’s architect, Mr Anthony Wolffe, who had now retired but was unfortunately unable to be present for the occasion.
ANDREW STEWART’S LONDON TO PARIS BIKE RIDE IN AID OF CHRISTIAN AID: 18-22 JULY 2012
There were some differences about this, my fourth, annual cycling event. Firstly the good news: my two nephews, Matt and Hamish, decided to join me in the firm belief that if their uncle could do it then it can’t be that difficult. The other minor modification was that about six months previously I had upgraded my faithful steed of a Ridgeback hybrid to a Bianchi Infinito 105 road bike and, for those less interested in the technicalities of bikes, let’s just say it was certainly a lot less tiring.
The first day was also different in that previously we had started at Bexley; this year we cycled from South Croydon to Dover, a total of 85 miles, making it the longest day’s cycling. Somewhere between the two was a very steep hill, the bottom of which was completely flooded due to the recent torrential rain. I am reluctant to admit that, about half way up, this was the one and only place in the 312 mile total that I had to get off my bike and walk. Before all my kind and generous sponsors come asking for a refund I would like to point out that this hill was steeper and longer than my usual training hill and I was certainly not the only one to dismount.
There were some similarities to other years, as I soon remembered the 2010 experience of being hot and sweaty having arrived at Dover and then drenched as we waited for over an hour in a cool wind at the port to board our ferry; a little shelter for cyclists on this exposed holding area would have been appreciated. Nevertheless, with a little help from the hand dryers on the ferry to Calais, we soon warmed up. The remainder of the route through Arras (the second night stop) and on to Compiegne was similar. The final day to Paris started with a lovely ride through the local forest, and ended with 35 of us all in Christian Aid livery cycling up the Champs Elysees to the Eiffel Tour, where a welcoming reception party was awaiting.
Almost all participants in this event are reluctant to attempt this more than once as they all say they would have difficulty with raising, for a further time, the minimum required sponsorship (£1,300). Well, thanks to my very loyal band of generous sponsors like you at St Ninian’s, I do not have this problem as you so kindly keep giving each year to this very worthy cause: a huge source of encouragement. Thank you to everybody for their prayers, support and generosity and, whilst funds are still being collected and donated, I can safely report that as this goes to print I have this year raised at least £1,500 – THANK YOU VERY MUCH INDEED.
SUNDAY 1 JULY 2012: During the Service Mrs Jenny Wright was officially welcomed as a Lay Worship Leader, having recently been licensed by the Bishop. The Rector explained that she would now be able to take non-Eucharistic services, under his direction, as well as to distribute the Reserved Sacrament to the housebound.
A MOTHERS’ UNION REGIONAL QUIET DAY, led by Bishop Gregor Duncan, was held at St Ninian’s on Saturday 16 June and attended by members from Dumfries, Castle Douglas and Dalbeattie as well as Diocesan President, Ann Glenesk. The Bishop gave three short addresses on the topic, ‘Your Gift – Discover and Celebrate’, interspersed with periods of silence for prayer, reflection, reading, resting … and he celebrated the Eucharist before there was a break for lunch in the Hall. The day was rounded off by Evening Prayer and the singing of ‘O God, you search me and you know me’.
PENTECOST – 27 MAY 2012
Bishop Gregor Duncan returned to St Ninian’s as Celebrant at the morning service of Family Eucharist, at which he confirmed Peter Little and dedicated two new stained glass windows.
With the dedication of the ‘Holy Spirit’ window by Bishop John at Pentecost 2009, only the two single lancets on either side of the Altar were left without stained glass. (The West Window will remain in clear glass because of the wonderful way in which it fills the Church with light.) Very quickly, two offers were made to sponsor designs and the Vestry appointed Nicky Hodgson, who had built the previous window to the design of Freda Blackwood, to design the new windows.
After much discussion, it was agreed that the South Window should represent St Ninian and Galloway, and the North Window St Kentigern and Glasgow. A number of preliminary sketches were considered before the design was finalised. The brief requested that the designs not replicate the existing Victorian painted glass but complement the existing glass in a contemporary style. There is almost no paint on the completed windows – the effects are created entirely by the colour and grain of the hand-made glass and the shaping of the lead-work.
In the South Window, the view is from the mouth of St Ninian’s cave, with its distinctive lintel, looking across the stony blue-grey beach to the “Candida Casa”, Ninian’s Church, relocated by artistic licence to the headland. The shadowy figure of the Saint, almost unknown to history, is turning away from a period of contemplation in the cave to his mission in the world—his gaze on the Church. The Canterbury Cross in the apex is original to the cave. The window is the gift of Mr Leslie Scarborough, in memory of his wife, Elsie.
In the North Window, Kentigern (often known by his nickname, Mungo, “the loved one”) is turning into an archway that might represent his cathedral, his Bishop’s staff in hand. At the bottom of the window are representations of four legends from his life: “the fish that never swam, the bell that never rang, the bird that never flew and the branch that never burned.” The window is the gift of Mrs Peggy Thomson.
MONDAY 21 MAY 2012 – BISHOP’S LECTURE
Once again Bishop Gregor Duncan gave another of his occasional lectures, this one entitled ‘”The Fall and Human Failure”. The Gordon Memorial Hall at St Ninian’s welcomed visitors from churches across the region – Dumfries, Dalbeattie and Kirkcudbright – as well as members of its own congregation for a challenging talk which provoked considerable discussion.
EASTER SUNDAY – 8 APRIL 2012
SUNDAY 18 MARCH – THE MOTHERING SUNDAY LUNCH FOR THE CONGREGATION WAS HELD AT THE KINGS ARMS, CASTLE DOUGLAS
Members of the congregation enjoyed an excellent two-course lunch followed by coffee/tea and truffles. Thanks to the Kings Arms for their hospitality.
SUMMARY OF THE MINUTES OF THE VESTRY MEETING HELD ON 20 JANUARY 2012 (click on link below)
SUNDAY 22 JANUARY
To mark the 60th birthday of our Rector David Bayne, a special party was held in the Hall following the 11am Service. It was arranged in secret by David’s wife, Alison (assisted by undercover agent Stephanie Dewhurst!), and the whole congregation was invited for food and drinks. Revd Andrew MacKenzie from Dumfries was the preacher at the Family Eucharist preceding the party, and the Lessons were read by Andrew Bayne.