The Presbytery’s Planning committee was not able to bring forward plans about Church building closures so there is much yet to hear about. They did decide that Clydebank and Old Kilpatrick should have just 3 Full Time Equivalents (FTEs); a FTE can be a Minister or a Ministries Development Staff member, like Gillian or Lorraine. Your Kirk Session has been discussing this development and expect to meet with representatives of the Planning Committee in August.
Nonetheless, it is clear that Dalmuir Barclay is continuing to demonstrate to everyone how the Church can forge a place in the town’s future. The Christian service of the Food Pantry and the Tots-to-Teens is second to none. The projects working with those in need in Clydebank speak to the life of Jesus himself. Obviously, it is not the only way to serve but it is a redirecting of members’ energies to reach out to those who do belong to the Church family (yet). This shift is being seen in many congregations who are exploring what it means to be missionary. It fulfils the Rev William Temple’s saying, ““The Church is the only organisation that does not exist for itself, but for those who live outside of it.”.
Quite rightly the congregation’s celebration of the Queen’s Jubilee with cake after Sunday worship was a fabulous way to maintain fellowship among the members of Dalmuir Barclay and Waterfront churches. But on a Wednesday and Friday fulfilling the call from the Rev Temple, the Café serves, among others, those who don’t ‘belong’ to the membership. All this means that though they know they don’t attend on a Sunday they might very well understand that this is a Church where they are made welcome by Christians.
The town has hard decisions ahead of it and many changes to face. But Dalmuir Barclay can keep its head high–it shows the flexibility required to live out Mission in this generation and is pointing itself in the right direction.
Speak to the volunteers on Wednesdays and Fridays to find out more and offer your help, if you are able, and/or your prayers so that the next development can be given the chance to grow among you to the glory of our wonderful Saviour.
Doesn’t time fly, it seems like no time at all since the last Newsletter yet here we are looking forward to Summer and perhaps getting away somewhere sunny to rest and recuperate after the difficult times we have experienced recently.
It has been good to see more of our church family, have the opportunity to meet up for worship and fellowship and feel part of church life again.We may all have said recently “When are we returning to normal”? During the pandemic there was plenty of time to consider what we had regarded as normal, what to hold on to and what to let go and realise we have the opportunity to embrace a new way of church life whilst appreciating everything and everyone who helped set the firm foundation on which the church was built. Change can be a scary prospect but an exciting one too.
There is no doubt there will be major changes within The Church of Scotland and just as one season gives way to another so must we adapt to meet the new challenges both church and community face in an ever changing world.
I said that it seemed like no time between Spring and Summer this year, yet Spring is a time of beginnings, of new shoots poking through as a sign of hope followed by the warmth and brightness of a Summer day which lifts our spirits and encourages us to smile a little more, be encouraged to cast off what has seemed to weigh us down in darker days and welcome new horizons and the possibilities they provide.There is a season and a reason for everything and as we move forward may we be aware of the changes ahead but not be overwhelmed.
Let us be sensitive to the feelings of others, supporting each other as we discuss what the future of the church may look like and what it means to us as individuals and as congregations.
We have come through change before and have thrived, have come together with purpose and plans and have prospered, this is just another step along our journey of faith together.
May our decisions be worthy of our call to mission, may hope overcome hesitancy, faith overcome fear and let us be uplifted by the joy of knowing that Jesus walks alongside us to give us strength as we move from well trodden paths to pastures new, from the familiar to the future as we enter this challenging yet creative chapter of church life.
Ecclesiastes.3:1 : To everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.
Love and Blessings to you all