KIRKCUDBRIGHT PARISH CHURCH 2017 REVIEW
AND CHURCH ORGANISATION REPORTS DATED MARCH 2018


LADIES BADMINTON CLUB 

The club continues to meet in the Church Hall every Thursday afternoon (2.00pm - 4.00pm) from September until the end of March.  This year we are very pleased to report that within the last few months we have been joined by four new players. Our games not only help to keep us fit, but are also great fun. The tea-break is very important, giving us the opportunity for lively discussions on a wide range of topics, and establishing friendships. Fiona Michie.

 

CHRISTIAN AID

Our major focus for fundraising is Christian Aid Week in May. During this time we work closely with the congregations of Greyfriars Episcopalian church and of St Andrew and St Cuthbert’s Roman Catholic Church.  In 2017 £5,204.09 was raised, the major contribution coming from the house to house collection of £3,908.65. The sponsored Kirkcudbright Half Marathon, walked by Doreen Blackadder of Greyfriars and Alex Kinnell raised £961.54. A further £333.94 was contributed by Mary Newton who held an afternoon tea at her own house. The events of this week although time consuming to organise, provide not only a substantial amount of money but also provide a great opportunity for all within the Christian community to work together. In addition this year £500 was sent to the Rohingya Appeal by the World Church Team (see their report). 

 

DRAMA CLUB

Kirkcudbright Parish Players have had another enjoyable and fulfilling year.  In March, we presented two evenings of entertainment with One Act plays (Allotment no. 51” and “To Make Up His Jewels”) and coffee – a format which is popular with our audiences.  Our 2017 pantomime was “Cinderella”. With a host of helpers, the principals and chorus worked hard to produce performances of a good standard, and audience reaction seemed to confirm we had achieved our aim. We are blessed to have enthusiasts who have expertise in production, music, choreography, costume, stage design and management, sound and light - all the necessities for the finished show. Our only plea at present is for more men with an interest in acting to join our group, so that we can widen our choice of plays in future.  

 

HEART FOR ART 

The ‘Heart for Art’ Group continues to go from strength to strength. We are in our fifth year of operation and meet every second Tuesday of the month in the Parish Hall for two hours of fun and creativity. Open mainly to those with Dementia or Alzheimer’s and encouraged by their care home staff to attend the sessions who come escorted in most cases. Other participants, who still remain independent, just wish the company of like minded fellows who find the atmosphere calm, friendly and encouraging. It’s a change of scene for everyone involved and the joy is obvious once they arrive and participate. Transport to and from the venue is valued high-ly .Without the volunteers from Rotary this would not be possible.  The main volunteers give of their time freely and are made up of professional and semi professional artists and those who just want to provide support. Many provide art materials and framing expertise free of charge, although Crossreach supply most of the equipment. A cup of tea/coffee is provided half way through the session with lovely homemade cakes and biscuits quickly disappearing. Nobody is turned away who wants to participate and create a work of art. The art works created are placed annually on show during the Art and Crafts Trail in the town and some of the works are printed into cards and prints by Crossreach. The Group is delighted to be part of this annual event which spreads the word well in our community and the participants are anxious to see their finished works framed and exhibited.  All of this would not be possible without the funding from Crossreach, the Social Care Council of the Church of Scotland who have supported our Group and the other groups in Scotland namely Garelochhead, Stonehaven, Broughty Ferry, Stamperland, Edinburgh and Bankfoot. Representatives include a trained project officer and assistants who visit the groups from time to time to keep us up to date with projects and guide us with their knowledge and principals. We hope the Heart for Art experience continues for another three years ‘if’ funding is maintained and there is no doubt it is of great value to many in our local community. Jane B. Gibson

 

MONDAY MORNING GROUP

The Monday Morning Bible Study Group continues to meet at the home of Mrs Kathleen Ramage. Although we still miss our inspiring leader, Revd. Douglas Irving and our happy mornings at the Manse, Mrs Ramage makes us very welcome, we are most grateful to her. We take it in turns to lead our studies but sometimes Revd Marian Dixon kindly joins us to help and advise. We have discussed several books from the New Testament, all of which have been helpful, but the last course, “Self Esteem” takes us deep within our personal experience and draws us close to a knowledge of God’s love for us. We have laid this aside until after Easter as we have now begun the Lent “York Course” which leads us toward Jesus Resurrection. As a group our only sadness is, that our numbers have reduced due to several members moving away from the area. Why not come and join us? We would be delighted to see you on a Monday morning, 10.00am at Mrs Kathleen Ramage’s house. 

 

MUMS & TOTS

The Parish Church Mums & Tots group is going from strength to strength which proves there is a need in the community for such a group. We are still getting a number of new babies and also some parents and children who have moved to this area. The group is an ideal place to get to know others and there are friendships made here that will last for years. We are also waiting for new brothers and sister to arrive which is an exciting time for us. Once again the group won 2nd place at the parade in August with their float of “Noah’s Ark”.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the regular helpers for making the group possible. Pat Parker in charge of refreshments and finances, Susan Hutton and Sally McKenzie on Wednesdays and An-nette Borthwick on Fridays. We are very grateful to her husband Bill for coming early and helping put out the equipment and returning later to help put it away again. Sadly one of our original helpers, Moira Jones, died on 30th December. Moira was very popular with everyone and she loved playing with the children. It was good to see some of the mums at Moira’s funeral. We are very grateful to Moira’s family for giving us the money donated at the service. Moira is missed by all the group who knew her. We are looking forward to our 3rd trip out to Cream of Galloway to meet some lambs. The Mums & Tots group is a valuable outreach for the Church in the community and I sincerely hope it continues for years to come. 

 

PRAISE GROUP

We have a willing group of volunteers who are keen to use their musical abilities in praising God through song and leading the congregation at the 9.30am services. We operate with a rota so usually 5 or 6 are together for a Sunday morning and meet together on the previous Thursday evening to practise. However this past year we have tried to meet on a monthly basis as a big group to have time of praise and fellowship together and it is also a good opportunity to learn new songs. We have also had more formal discussions together, from what worship means to us to more practical issues such as how we are impacted by the church's copyright licence.
 

 
SUNDAY SCHOOL

There are nine children who regularly attend the older group (primary school age) and four children who regularly attend the younger pre-school group. Sunday school takes place during 9.30am service, following the children’s talk in church. The teaching material from Scripture Union echoes the Scripture used for the children’s talk given in church, and gives the leaders different options and ideas to help communicate the message in a fun and memorable way. We have also begun to host some of the 9.30am services. The children have enjoyed getting to take part in the services. This year we have a rota with leaders and helpers to help with the wide range of ages in the older group. The leaders are; Emily Harrison, Susan Hutton, David Crudgington, Katy Metcalf, Ewan Kennedy, Rhys Loftus and Apphia and Alistair Simpson. We are grateful to be joined by helpers from Barcaple; Paul Knecht, Henry Reading, Dan Harrison, Ben Mertner and Marc De Craigher. Sarah Crudgington is the leader for the younger group and is assisted by Rose Wands and Jenna Richardson. As always, any offers of help for either group would be gratefully received. 


 
TUESDAY MORNING GROUP 

Height 5ft 1in, nose hooked, legs bowed, eyebrows hairy, charismatic – could get along with lots of folk, born in university city of Tarsus, a devout highly educated Pharisee, a mystic, a persecutor of the new Christians. Yes, it’s Paul who wrote Letters to Romans, 1&2 Corinthians, Philippians, and especially Philemon, but not Ephesians or Colossians, and certainly not Titus and Timothy. What did Luke think of him? What did Paul think of Rome’s understanding of Empire and Christ’s – and what is ours? Yes, we ask questions, don’t you? We are soon going to consider the ecumenical programme for Lent. Come along on Tuesdays 10.00am at Daar Lodge.  


 
TUESDAY EVENING GROUP

We are a small group and meet in each other’s homes. We have studied “Christian Disciplines”, various topics brought by individual members and are now using the York Lent Course on the Resurrection which has been very challenging. We enjoy wonderful fellowship, friendship, laughter and lively discussion and are always looking to expand our group and welcome new people to join us.  

 
 
WORLD CHURCH TEAM

During 2017 we responded to two Crisis Appeals by donating £600 in April to the DEC (Disasters Emergency Committee) East Africa Food Crisis Appeal and £500 in October to the Christian Aid Rohingya Crisis Appeal. In 2016 we supported the Church of Scotland’s “Let us Build a House” project in Nepal with £500. The Church of Scotland has meanwhile asked congregations if they would agree to their donations being redirected to building schools and related infrastructures for community use as their partner, the United Mission to Nepal, has been unable to obtain permission from the Nepalese government to build houses. The group agreed. In June 2017, we fulfilled our commitment to collect £2000 for Med-ical Aid for Palestinians and began evaluating further projects to support. As a result, a small charity, Wa-bia Network, run by Judy and Steve Martin was identified. Judy and Steve work through non-governmental organisations run by local people in Tanzania. Most of the activities supported are in and around Mwanza, the main Tanzanian port on Lake Victoria and the second largest city in Tanzania. These include several successful local microcredit schemes (small loans with no collateral to non-traditional borrowers). Loans are made to women with no other requirements as to age, education or business background; Wabia’s local partners provide training and mentoring, forming small groups of clients who help and support each other. Other activities funded include sanitation and hygiene projects, school sup-plies and healthcare. “Wabia helps to empower those who are ready to help themselves.”  In October, Judy and Steve spent a few days in Kirkcudbright and gave a fascinating presentation about their work to the Church. In 2017, our nine popular monthly coffee mornings and Winter Wonderland stall raised £1,947.72. Since our first one in October 2008 date these coffee mornings have raised an amazing £21,043.43. We would like to say a very big thank-you to all our regular supporters for their generosity and to Margaret Hughes and all the team for their hard work.

 

YOUTH WORK

We have had a great year with KPC Youth continuing our projects and developing new ones. We our still running three Scripture Unions in the local schools. We have two in the Academy, one is on a Tuesday and is classroom based with attendance of up to seven pupils. We are currently going through Thessalonians looking at what it was like for early Christians. The other is on a Thursday and uses football to engage with the young people with attendance of up to 60. Here we have a short thought for the day using different scripture. The third is in the Primary School running on a Friday it is also classroom based engaging with the children through simple games and crafts, with attendance of up to 35. We use the Scripture Union material on Luke’s diary of a disciple. It is a great translation of the bible making it easier to read and understand for the children.  We have continued our relationship with the school by supporting the basketball, it has been a great year with around 20 boys attending. I have thoroughly enjoyed coaching and playing basketball with all of them. Sadly all but two of the seniors are leaving this year but we look forward to those coming up through and developing them as well.  We had another successful assembly at Christmas, where the Academy came to the Church with a great mix of input from the staff and pupils. The Church Praise Band also led a few carols and Rhys gave a short reflective message.  Easter assembly will be held in the school this year and will be delivered by Rev John Collard.  Our most exciting development this year has been the Friday Youth Projects. We started the year with an afternoon drop in which was successful but we felt it would be better developed on a Friday evening. Having moved to a Friday we have been able to increase our volunteers allowing us to cater for more young people. Friday night youth club has seen up to 18 young people attending. With an opportunity for Holy Moly time where we discuss different topics from the bible and answer any questions the young people may have.  With different day trips and Children's evening throughout the year as well.  It has been a pleasure to serve in the community and work alongside some amazing children and young people. We are thankful for all prayers and support we have received through the year and look forward to what God has planned for the youth next.