Volume 47 2011-12

Whither the Church's Worship


The editor underlines a theme that emerges in the issue, the need for a clear awareness of where we have come from if we are to know where we are going. David Beckett is quoted, on 'Presbyterian leaders who know all too well how to improvise but have never learned to play the tune'.

Children of the Way or Children in the Way

Rachel J.W. Dobie

The Church of Scotland has an ambivalent attitude to children. The writer's experience in the Board of Parish Education and as Sunday School Adviser. An account of the place of children in the church in the immediate and the more distant past. Westerhoff's four stages of faith. An assessment of today's practice, where imaginative initiatives are found but where also difficulties are experienced in carrying this into Sunday worship. The Sunday School in its traditional form may have had its day. The paper urges further work.

Stained Glass in Scotland: A Perspective

Iain B. Galbraith

The paper outlines some of the trends, styles and influences at work in stained glass in Scotland from its revival around 1820 to the present time. The ancient history of glass. Its expansion in conjunction with Gothic architecture. Glass as mirror of the world and bible of the poor. Scotland and glass: the Reformation (an editorial note questions the assumption of destruction); the Age of Enlightenment as not producing suitable buildings for glass; its re-emergence with the Gothic Revival (but which went beyond the medieval style); pioneers in Scotland. Many examples are given and their styles analysed (Pre-Raphaelitism, the Aesthetic Movement, the Arts and Crafts Movement, Art Nouveau etc. The effect of war on the subject matter of stained glass. Some contemporary artists are named.

The Scottish Stained Glass Symposium and Trust

Alison M. Robertson

This paper was given at the Study Day in Kippen in 2011 by the founder of the bodies described. Referring to the spread of themes found in stained glass windows, the paper gives the functions of the Symposium and Trust as 1. conservation (or originals, of artistic integrity, of concept), 2. knowledge-sharing (research and filing, inventories, signatures on windows), 3. recording (film, NADFAS, Scottish War Memorials Project).

An Interfaith and Ecumenical Gathering For Syria

The Very Rev Dr Finlay A.J. Macdonald (Additional material, Douglas Galbraith)

This is an descriptive outline of an event in St Giles' Cathedral on 30th october 2012, attended by members of civic and faith communities and with the aim of expressing solidarity with the people of Syria. It was attended by some 200 people. An initiative of the Church of Scotland, greetings from Syrian church leaders were transmitted through Dr Macdonald Dr Andrew McLellan, and contributions to the event were made by a lecturer in Contemporary Islam and by a Middle Eastern music ensemble; there were readings from the Bible and the Qu'ran.


Revd James Hay Hamilton

This is an edited and updated version of an article which appeared (February 1980) in Continuo, the former magazine of the Glasgow Society of Organists. The writer was the Revd James Hay Hamilton. It refers to a form of service known as 'The Use of Colmonell'. The music is reproduced. It is found that the trust set up to continue this Use does not currently function.

Before 1865


An extract from Memoirs of a Highland Lady (Elizabeth Grant of Rothiemurcus). It illustrates the situation of worship in Scotland prior to the founding of the Church Service Society. It is followed by a poem about going to church from 1872.

Secretarial Notes

Douglas Galbraith

The forthcoming Annual Meeting 2013 with author Jonny Baker. The Study Day on John McLeod Campbell to be in October 2013. The Annual Meeting 2012 with the presidential address by Rachel Dobie and the Study Day 2012 In Gorbals Parish Church addressed by English Methodist Adrian Burdon on Worship and Mission and by John Harvey who brought a local perspective. Ideas for the 150th anniversary of the Society in 2015. The website and the mounting of the results of the Wode Psalter Project of the University of Edinburgh. Co-operation with the Scottish Church Society. The publishing by the Society of the three Chalmers Lectures for the 450th anniversary of the Reformation in 2010.