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.
While the Baton was with Torphichen Kirk it travelled and visited:
- Bathgate High Church Guild
- St Michael’s Church, Linlithgow Guild (An eco-congregation)
- Torphichen Primary School (An Eco 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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.