The Mission Group has two main aims - one to work with organisations within Kilsyth Burns & Old and secondly to reach out to the local and worldwide community.
Well folks, 2020 is now behind us and most of 2021 lies ahead. We now have a vaccination programme which gives us another layer of protection from Covid-19 and we look forward in faith to hopefully a little more normality in our lives.
Reflectitve Service: In December, we arranged a Reflective Service where we shared our thoughts on the challenges and opportunities 2020 brought to us and we are very grateful to the congregation and friends for their support with really high numbers dialing in.
Bold Inspirational Event: Covid-19 may have put paid to us all joining together for our New Year lunch of haggis, neeps and tatties but it certainly did not stop us coming together on Sunday 31 January with the help of Conferoo to share a very special time. Our event featured a variety of great songs from our very own Margaret Wren and James Greachan as well as poetry and prayer from the Mission Group. Our good friend Arthur Stewart joined in for a chat with out Minister Bob when they gave a mixture of humorous and serious thoughts on the past year and also inspiration for the year ahead.
Bob rounded off the afternoon by saying "With God by our sides and hope in our hearts, nothing can break the bonds that exist between us all. Here's to 2021, whatever it may bring" and w all echo those words.
Peace Garden: In the 8 months since the idea of the Peace Garden first took root (!), our generous congregation, as well as donating our lovely bench, pot, plants and soil, has given the fantastic sum of £1005 in monetary donations. To date, we have spent £739 on ground works, plants and shrubs and bark. This leaves us with a healthy balance of £226 moving forward into the spring.
In the first instance, it is our intention to add in some welcoming spring flowers. Now that the garden is more established, we can see better where these flowers would be placed. We all look forward to seeing bursts of spring colour to mark the changing of the seasons and new beginnings. We also intend to add more plants where needed and hope that, as we come about the garden again, e will see where possible additions and changes can be made to further improve the area. We hope and pray that it won't be too long before it can be used again as a meeting place for friends. In the meantime, it is a lovely area to visit individually for a time of quiet reflection.
We are indebted to Anderson McMillan Memorials who have kindly offered to donate an inscribed stone to formally mark our Peace Garden. At the present time, they are waiting for materials to come in but they hope to have this installed by late spring/early summer. This is extremely generous of the and again highlights community and local business coming together to support one another during these difficult times.
Thank you again to everyone for supporting us in the creation of the Peace Garden.
Wishing everyone Peace and Joy this Christmas and every blessing for a brighter year ahead.
Bold Inspirational New Year Event
Sunday 31 January at 3.00pm on Conferoo
For the past two years, we have come together and enjoyed a Scottish Lunch with entertainment to herald in the start of a New Year. We can't physically meet up this year but what we can do is still come together thanks to Conferoo. On Sunday 31 January at 3.00pm, the Mission Group and friends invite you to a BOLD inspirational event featuring songs, poetry and chat focussing on the year ahead.
We might not be able to share our usual haggis, neeps and tatties but we can share some warm-hearted fellowship and some positive messages for the New Year.
The usual Sunday morning phone number applies and you can start phoning in from 2.50 ahead of the start time of 3.00pm.
Hope you can join us.
Peace Garden: An additional flower bed has now been planted under the new Notice Board and the area is looking really good. After expenses for the new bed, we have around £180 remaining from all donations received. This money will enable us to maintain the garden and complete the area with the installation of a plaque or stone. We are in the process of sourcing something suitable and hope to have it installed soon.
Mary's Meals: The back pack programme is still suspended due to the pandemic but we are very grateful to those of you who still shop for bargains and to those who store items for us. (See separate item under "Mary's Meals".)
Donations to Organisations: Prior to lockdown and, as a result of our Pancake Tuesday coffee morning fundraising event it had been our intention to donate to the Sunday School, Rainbows and Brownies. We had previously given £100 to the Anchor Boys and £100 to the Junior Section from earlier fundraising events. We have only now been able to hand over £100 to the Sunday School, £100 to the Rainbows and £100 to the Brownies. We know that this will be very useful to the organisations in the run up to Christmas.
Reflective Service: This year the Reflective Service will be held over "Confereoo" at:
3.00pm on Sunday 6 December 2020
This can be accessed on the usual telephone number. If you have not used this service before and wish to join us, please dial in anytime from 2.50 to 2.59 using the number: 033 00 88 34 34 then, when prompted, enter the pin no: 462824. You can then either say your name or remain silent and wait for the service to begin.
We have held this service over the last two years and those who attended found it to be very meaningful. We look forward to sharing with you our reflections on the exceptional year that has been 2020. You will find the Order of Service as an insert to "Contact" and also here on the website. Please invite your family and friends to join us. All are welcome.
Thanks and good wishes: The Mission Group members thank everyone for the support we have received in so many ways, but particularly enabling us to make the vision of a Peace Garden a reality during these very strange times when our church as been closed and our activities have been curtailed. We hope it has brought a degree of peace and calm to those who have been able to visit the garden. We also know that the pictures of the garden in the last issue of "Contact" were enjoyed by many.
We wish you all a very Happy and Peaceful Christmas and we look forward to the day when we can meet up in person and enjoy the fellowship and friendship we have missed so much at Burns & Old.
KEEPING OUR CONGREGATION CONNECTED
Many of us are missing a chat and a catch up in the hall after morning worship on a Sunday. To try and combat the lack of contact with others, especially during these shorter days, and to stay in touch with those who we might not normally see, we have set up telephone calls to let you enjoy a catch up with a small group of people.
This catch up or "socially distant" coffee morning - whatever you want to call it - has been tried and tested and is already up and running, with two groups who dial in on a weekday morning, once a fortnight and put the world to rights! They have discussed a variety of topics including walking around Kilsyth, health, gardening and even Dawson's pies!
Those who are already in the groups enjoy the chat and contact with others. If this appeals to you or even if you would like to find out some more then please get in touch with Mary Paterson or Janette McFarlane, your Elder or the Minister who will pass your details to Mary. Your usual telephone charges will apply.
Hi, everyone, time for an update on the recent developments of our Peace Garden. The groundwork has been completed which includes a slabbed pathway from the driveway to the bench allowing easy access for all. At the side of the bench, a large pot was installed to which the "Perfect Gentleman" rose has been added. You may remember that this was planted to commemorate Bill Gracie's 100th birthday.
Sadly the poor weather has had a detremental affect on the rose's bloom but the plant itself is a hardy soul (just like our Bill!) and will come to flourish again in time and bring us all great pleasure. Another flower bed has been added to complement the one which is already in place and now with the garden well and truly established and the care and attention which has been given to the pathways, the Church grounds are looking very much cared for. Those of us who have worked in the Church grounds have enjoyed the positive comments from those who pass through or live by the Church. We even had offers of tea, plants and work! It has made it all the more worthwhile.
We still have some work to do but in the meantime once again thank you for the many wonderful donations, the beautiful bench, lovely plants and money towards the Peace Garden project. We do hope you will visit and enjoy the garden and the view of the "Old Lady of Backbrae" through the branches of the cherry tree. It is a lovely spot to sit and find comfort and peace in familiar surroundings during these trying times.
PS - click on each photograph to see the full picture.
Good progress since planting was done in the garden in July. The paving is now complete and the rose "Perfect Gentleman" put in place beside the garden seat. All looking very neat and tidy; come along and enjoy the peace and quiet.
During these trying times, many of us who have been lucky enough to enjoy outdoor time in our gardens have greatly appreciated the benefit of it. With that in mind, the Mission Group are going to create a small, simple Peace Garden within the Church grounds to afford people the opportunity to stop, pause and reflect in what is becoming an increasingly lengthy period for all in connecting with the physical Church. We know the Church is not the building but the people; however, for many a walk to the Church grounds brings a great deal of comfort. While this will be of great value in this crisis, it will continue beyond these times to provide a spot for quiet reflection.
In the first instance, the Mission Group will create a flower bed but it is hoped through time, we will fund-raise to purchase a garden bench and develop the space in making it accessible to all.
We also hope that in the future, our many new friends who will join us on a Sunday morning, will visit us and can find comfort in this new space too. We are fortunate that already we have had donations of plants, etc to get us started and we will undertake the work over the next few weeks in small groups while adhering to social distancing measures. The Mission Group is always open to help and suggestion and welcome you if you wish to participate in this project.
We take inspiration from a quote from the late Audrey Hepburn - "To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow". As a congregation, our tomorrow will come but in the interim, we plant together, we sow together and together we continue to flourish. Thank you.
The rose on the right is aptly named "Perfect Gentleman" in honour of Mr Bill Gracie's 100th birthday.
This has been placed in the Peace Garden next to the new bench.
Pancake Coffee Morning
Thank you to everyone who supported the pancake coffee morning on Shrove Tuesday. The inviting smell of freshly made pancakes complemented the warm and friendly atmosphere enjoyed by all who came along. A big thank you to Jeanette Marshall on the hot-plate, who did a great job of keeping up with the demand! The wonderful sum of £355 was raised for Church projects. Thank you again to everyone who contributed to making the morning such a success.
Happy 2020 from the Mission Group
Once again, we have started a New Year in our Church life by bringing everyone together for a Scottish-themed lunch. We were delighted that so many of the congregation were able to join us.
Our lunch began with Victoria piping a greeting to the congregation as they entered the hall. After a warm welcome from the Minister, Ross led us in the Selkirk Grace. We then enjoyed wonderful haggis, neeps and tatties, followed by oatcakes and cheese, crusty bread with shortbread and tablet to follow - a genuine Scottish feast.
Anne kindly read from the Glasgow Bible, reminding us of Jesus Feeding the Five Thousand and our talented choir once again added their own signature to the day by giving us a few Scottish numbers. Victoria then had us toe tapping and clapping with a selection on the pipes. After a vote of thanks from the Minister, we rounded off the event singing Auld Lang Syne, accompanied by James on the piano; finally the Gaelic Blessing from Ross before we departed - a guid day had by all!
We are indebted to the many people who contributed to make the day such a success. In particular, we thank Anne who set the scene for our lunch by decorating the hall in wonderful Scottish style. To all those who provided, to the many who served the lunch to ensure it was piping hot and to those behind the scenes working away as well. A great team effort as always.
Back in October, the Mission Group bought bulbs which the Sunday School kindly planted for us. The children enjoyed a busy morning planting them and we were able to hand out the pots to the congregation at the end of the lunch. Thank you to the Sunday School for bringing some lovely color to many of our homes.