Category Archives: Borders

Exciting new developments from the Local Networks Seminar 2015 – Report now available!

The 2015 Local Networks Seminar took place in Dunblane on Saturday 26th September. This year the main themes discussed at the Seminar have been used to propose an exciting new way of providing web-based resources, which can be downloaded and printed out to encourage more participation in our congregations.

After considering what other resources are available, the ECS Board now plans to invite individuals / congregations / networks, with the relevant experience and expertise, to contribute to developing and writing the new resources.

Local Networks Seminar Report 2015  also lists a whole host of topics and speakers from networks all around the country (see Appendix 3). If you are not already involved in a network, take a look and see what you might be missing! Everyone is welcome at network meetings – you don’t have to be from a registered congregation. Full information about your local network can be found here.

Climate Justice baton in Selkirk. #cop21baton

During its recent visit to Selkirk, our climate justice baton visited 3 churches, 7 schools and some community groups. There were also two great articles in the local paper.

Organisations who received the baton included: Selkirk United Reformed Church, Ashkirk Parish Church, Thornfield House Care Home, all the Primary Schools in the town and valleys, the Wednesday Prayer Group, Selkirk High School, Brownies and Guides as well as Coffee Plus. On the Friday, it was in the care of four of the Men’s Group as they cycled over the St Boswells to hand the baton onto the church there.

It was great to see the interest it created in Climate Justice and the decisions to be made at COP21 in Paris in December.

Met at Tweedbank station by the Eco-group in an electric car

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Handover to Selkirk Parish church by friends from Torphichen

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Taking the message out

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Thursday Guides

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JAM (Jesus and me) at Knowepark Primary School

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Setting off for St Boswells

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Press coverage

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Baton Relay: From Kirk Yetholm to Selkirk via Torphichen. #cop21baton

As we met Robin Mchaffie from Kirk Yetholm at Dobbie’s garden Centre Dalkeith a member of staff became interested in why we had this Baton.

We shared the story of the Baton and she became quite excited to find out if her church might be taking part and went away with a leaflet.

1. Ky to TK

While the Baton was with Torphichen Kirk it travelled and visited:

  • Bathgate High Church Guild
  • St Michael’s Church, Linlithgow Guild  (An eco-congregation)
  • 2. St Michael's Guild
  • Torphichen Primary School (An Eco School)
  • 4. Torphichen Primary School
  • Westfield Primary School (These being the two schools in our Parish).
  • Avonbridge Parish Church (our linked Congregation which is also registered with Eco congregation).
  • 5. Avonbridge Church

And it went out for coffee with several members including those who weren’t able to be at the special service held on Sunday 11th October to welcome the Baton and spread the story.

6. TK Congregation

7. TK Congregation

On Sunday 11th October we held a special service to welcome the baton, learn more about the need for Climate Justice, and reflect on why we should care, consider our actions and add our hopes and prayers to those already being carried on this journey to Paris.

The Baton was welcomed into the church with an especially composed Fanfare composed by a member of the congregation, Gina Baker and played by 6 brass instruments – 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, a French horn and a Euphonium. All played by members of the congregation.

8. Fanfare TK

The service was well attended and had been publicised both in our village newsletter and the local newspaper.

Everything had a French flavour to it including hymns with French tunes and the call to worship being spoken in both English & French.

Call to Worship: “C’est au Siegneur qu’appartient le monde avec tout ce qu’il contient, la terre avec ceux qui l’habitent.”  (French Protestant Bible)

“The earth is the Lord’s, and all that is in it, the world, and those who  live in it” – Ps 24

There was good participation and much interest in the theme and a sense of optimism that ambitious targets can be achieved.

Towards the end of the service the baton was passed around the whole congregation and ribbons in rainbow colours were added as a symbol of hope for a strong & lasting agreement to be made in Paris at the 21st Climate change summit.

9. Welcome to Torphichen Kirk

It was described as a ‘life changing service’.

We added our hopes and prayers to those of the 1000’s of people of all ages who have passed the Baton the length and breadth of Scotland in the course of 2015.

Awareness has been raised in this small community of the need and urgency for Climate justice in fun ways and while meeting new people, reviving friendships, enthusing some to do more as individuals and while enabling many to use their talents to praise God.

The service was followed by French themed food and many stayed behind to listen to French songs sung and played live (Chansons Baton) and eat Batons of bread filled with a variety of things, together with macarrons & Meringues.

A report with photo was published in:

The Linlithgow Gazette & West Lothian Courier (& Bo’ness Journal) following the service.

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It has now gone by Borders Railway to Selkirk and has been taken by two members of the congregation to be handed over during morning worship. In doing this it has brought two couples who are old friends together for the first time in several years. It has been passed on with a real sense of renewal and hope for the future.

10. Baton arrives back in the Borders

Agenda for the Central Borders network meeting on 19.10.15

The agenda for the Central Borders network meeting on October 19, at 4.30pm in Selkirk Parish Hall, where the climate justice baton will be on display, is now available and is as follows:

  1. Welcome and introductions
  2. Climate baton relay
  3. Local networks seminar, Dunblane 26 September
  4. Edinburgh climate march/rally 28 November
  5. Greener Borders – coffee morning and winter programme
  6. “Solar church – the Selkirk experience”
  7. Brief reports from congregations
  8. AOB – date/venue of next meeting