Monday, May 24, 2010

One of the funniest Church of Scotland ministers I know......

Another fabulous day of report and debate and some actual interviews! I'm really enjoying it...there is a bit of a lot of sitting, but it's balanced somewhat by much stair-climbing. You see, the Assembly Hall is near the top of a narrowish hill and it sort of wraps round the it is a kind of a split-level place. You can see by the photo! HA!

The big news is that The Reverend Eileen Manson spoke at General Assembly!!!! Yes she did! She was AWESOME! There is a video of it....from behind the scenes! Will try to snatch a copy from the press room of her as she looked on the big screens! SO fab! She encouraged the General Assembly to extend congratulations to the Guides.....which used to be the Girl Guides, but now is just "The Guides"....although you still have to be a girl to be a member.

Today started with a service, followed by some members of the Children's Assembly commenting, singing, and answering questions. They were cute and thought provoking....One little girl asked why the ministers never come into the Sunday School class. This is a big one in my mind because I actually like my kids in the service...the whole service! How else will they learn to worship with the community if they don' with the community. AND if the service is too uninspiring to keep the attention of an inquisitive child, could it be that your services are......uninspiring?!....*GASP* I'm not saying they are....I'm just saying..... that I've offended can hear what a clown I am!

I interviewed Stuart Wilson today! He talked about his job, and the role of the media in the Church. He does a great interview as you will see....I, on the other hand, am a stuttering idiot of an interviewer! What was with my word retrieval skills this morning?! Dang! Och well! It takes all kinds! I just sound like a crazy person! This'll get posted tonight after I a) get this blog done b) eat something c) figure how to post it.....cross your fingers!

The report on the HIV/AIDS Project was very hopeful and well presented as was the Guild presentation. The Guild is what was once what I always knew to be The Woman's Guild, but now it's just The Guild...I guess that means you don't have to be a woman to be on it's a bit different from the Guides....I think.

The day's marathon session was the report on the Church and Society Council. This somehow seemed to me like a council that was made up of so many various topics it could be it's own assembly! The Church sort of being society and all....
So, from bio-ethics, mental health, education, environmental issues, military issues, responses to poverty, The Girl Guides....I mean The Guides! It just covers such a broad, broad range of issues. Society. Big. It got a quiet kind of way. What spoke to me most was a young person's witness of her mental health issues and her fear of making it known....whilst in the hospital, it was a chaplain that helped her towards healing by listening and repeating to her the Gospel message, but she later has thought on how she might have been less traumatized had she felt comfortable bringing the situation to her own parish minister. This was presented well, and she called out to ministers to be aware of how much pastoral care can fill the gap in wait times for the National Health Service, or prevent a problem from escalating. She was really brave. Bless her. My own experience with Scottish culture has led me to understand there is a distinct embarrassment about admitting mental illness. This is not a judgement. Some Americans get therapy for everything! But, there certainly are times when the best thing to do is get counselling, or medication, or both! For this young person to get up and speak so eloquently on such a tender topic showed bravery and maturity.....and common sense. Ministers need not only some basic pastoral care tactics, but close contacts within their parish or community with professionals who actually know what they're doing. HA! That was a joke....but sort of true. Ministers can be a first line of defense and an advocate, but they need to be able to send suffering folk on to a professional if the illness demands.

Also interviewed was the effervescent Very Reverend Andrew McLellan, check out that video!

And The Reverend Syd Graham, Convener of the Social Care Council (his video will be done later though!) Both wish to be in the running for "The Funniest Person I Know"....we'll change it to "The Funniest Church of Scotland Minister I Know", and let them prove their hilarity by their comments on the blog! To the starting blocks boys! I'm holding my sides already!

PAX! I'm away to eat some becoming more typically Scottish by the minute!


  1. Hey Jeanie - found you're blog!! Great - love it. Specially the bit with Eileen. Keep up the good work. It's good to see it from the perspective of someone from the outside looking in. Love from Ishbel (your blog watcher from the Borders)

  2. Hi Jeanie - follow-up quote to our chat @ Holyrood:

    "Through failure to understand the differences between evangelicalism and fundamentalism, through a failure to engage with biblical scholarship, and sometimes through sheer obscurantist and anti-intellectual approaches, evangelicals have often damaged rather than helped the case for a high view of Scripture. We do not properly state and defend the evangelical doctrine of Scripture by retreating into an untenable ghetto mentality and ignoring genuine matters of concern. Rather, we must engage with those who take a different position and we must do so graciously."

    - Andy McGowan (2007) "The divine spiration of Scripture: challenging evangelical perspectives", Apollos, Nottingham, p 11

    Hey - I found our chat at Holyrood both engaging and gracious! - Your liberal evangelical pal!