Below are a few of the articles in our EASTER 2017 edition of our Newsletter.

Click here to download a full printable version of this Newsletter & Supplement.

Rev Geoff Underwood – Eulogy by Jayne Scott - Click to download

Dear Friends

As I write this we are journeying through the season of Lent which covers the forty days or six weeks before Easter. This recalls the time Jesus spent fasting in the wilderness and it’s worth remembering that this period was for Jesus a time of great struggle, and victory, which is no doubt why Lent leads up to the events of Holy Week and Easter Day.

With so much going on it’s hard to see Easter as anything more than just another holiday, another family dinner, or another sign of spring. But Easter was never meant to be just a spiritual bump on the road to self-fulfillment, it was meant to be a whole new road. Easter is the perfect time to rethink the road you’re on, where it’s leading, and whether it’s where you want to go.

We’re all natural born travelers, but since we’re not homing pigeons, we don’t have a natural sense of direction or internal GPS. We know we’re moving through stages in our lives, we’re just not sure we know where we are and where we’re going. Easter is a signpost inviting us to get our bearings and travel a new way to a new place to live a new kind of life.

Now I realise there’s a lot about Easter which may turn some travelers off and make some committed religious folks angry. It always has and always will. But the One who has travelled this way before gave us clues about what we might expect. His name is Jesus and his story is nothing less than miraculous. Easter is His story and His invitation to experience life as it was meant to be.

As a Church community we are committed to travel the road God has prepared for us, share the joys and burdens common to travelers, and marvel at the wonders and surprises that lie ahead. Easter is a defining moment in your life when you must choose to stay in the rush hour traffic going nowhere in particular or take a chance and trust God’s plan. Movement without meaning leads to frustration. So if this letter finds you travelling down a bumpy road filled with frustration and anxiety, Easter is your invitation to discover a whole new way of living.

If you can, please do come to the Holy Week and Easter services listed later in this newsletter and hear the miraculous story.

Jacqui joins me in wishing you God’s blessing for Easter

Yours in Jesus

Mike

Thank you for the patience and trust you have shown in your elders over the last 6 months as they have dealt with some difficult issues. It is great that we are now moving on – and doing so together.

We now have three pieces of good news which should be shared and celebrated:

1. At the February meeting of Lothian Presbytery Sheila Bulloch shared the story of Kid’s Kirk. It was a story that encouraged and inspired many. God is at work in Chalmers.

2. At the same meeting Presbytery agreed to cover most of Chalmers' financial liabilities from its funds.

3. As a result of this, Chalmers can now proceed to elect a nominating committee – which is the next step in calling a minister.

Finding a minister may not be straightforward. At the moment there are many more churches than there are ministers in the Church of Scotland. This means that some churches have spent a number of years looking for a minister.

One thing that makes a difference is the manse. In some ways, being given a manse to live in is a huge attraction for a minister. In other ways it is not. A minister is not given a choice. The manse is non-negotiable. If someone is to become the minister of Chalmers church then they HAVE to live in the

manse provided. Ministers are almost unique now in not being given any choice about the house they live in.

An attractive manse does not guarantee a minister. But potential ministers will only apply if they think they (and more importantly their family) would be happy to live in the manse.

Our manse should be attractive to ministers … but it is NOT at the moment. It is not up to current standards. Specifically its insulation needs upgrading.

The Kirk Session is trying to raise funds to deal with this. It is going to ask the congregation to help. I’m sure you will respond generously when the time comes.

Mean time please continue to pray for our church, for its mission in our community and for our next minister.

Rev Neil Dougall, Interim Moderator




Click on the Month to download a full printable version of that Month's issue of the Chalmers Memorial Newsletter.

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