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Notes on Argyll Presbytery Meeting 7th December 2021

Points which might be of interest and of relevance to the church in Colonsay and Oronsay.

Presbytery met again via Zoom with approximately 77 people attending.

Rev Dugald Cameron has moved to Appin and Lismore Church from Kilmore and Oban Church.

Consultation on General Assembly Reform. Rev Donald McCorkindale gave a presentation and invited discussion on the proposed reform of the General Assembly. Discussion focussed around why; where - on line, on site or hybrid; when - reduce to two yearly or less; and who? Particular concern was expressed about enabling younger members to participate e.g. over a weekend.

Assessor Elders, from the four congregations which have Assessor Elders appointed, have submitted their reports which were circulated to all members of the Presbytery. The report prepared by Martin and Myra Waddell on COPC is available for everyone to read. Please email Myra if you would like to have a copy.

Solemnisation of Same Sex Marriage. Presbyters were invited to vote on this overture which was sent to all presbyteries by the General Assembly. In essence the overture states that a Minister of Word and Sacrament or a Deacon may apply to become an authorised celebrant for same sex marriage. However no Minister or Deacon shall be required to participate or be involved in the arrangements for a same sex marriage. The majority of members of the Presbytery voted in favour of this overture.

Presbytery Planning Review Group have met with members of the Faith Nurture Forum to seek clarification on various issues. No further details were shared about that meeting.

The 80 church buildings in the Presbytery will require to be assessed, using the General Trustees Toolkit, to prepare a report that will guide Presbytery on the assessment of buildings. All Kirk Sessions will be required to complete and return an AMBA form by 31st January 2022. No further details about this were shared.

All congregations which have permission to call a new minister will have that permission withdrawn on 31st Dec 2021.

Presbytery Reform. Highlands and Islands Transition team, including Argyll Presbytery, is working on bring nine Presbyteries together to form one Presbytery, This would make it the largest of the new presbyteries and cover over a third of the land mass of Scotland.

Local Worship Leader training under the leadership of Aileen Binner had taken place and further training was anticipated.

Rev John McCulloch, who had been elected as Sole Nominee for Cowal Kirk, has withdrawn for personal reasons.

Treasurer's Report. Included in the report are the proposed M&M contributions and Presbytery dues for 2022 which generated some lively discussion and dissent as some congregations indicated that they would not be able to afford these payments due to reduced attendance and income. If a congregation cannot pay these sums then they should contact the Convenor of the Stewardship and Finance Committee of Argyll Presbytery in the first instance. I would anticipate that quite a number of congregations will be doing this.

Marilyn Shedden, Mission Committee Convenor, ex Moderator and ex Business Convenor resigned from Presbytery and the Church of Scotland due to the ongoing situation in West Kintyre. Warm tribute was paid to Marilyn for all her diligence, inspiration and her life of faith.

Further info on any of the above available from

Myra Waddell, Representative Presbytery Elder COPC. myrawaddell1@btinternet.com

Colonsay Parish Church is a registered charity SC031271

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