Old High St. Stephen's, Inverness

Welcome to Old High St Stephen's Church, Inverness

Month: September 2013

Month of Sundays for October 2013

Our Month of Sundays sheet lists services for the coming month.
You can view or download our services for October here .

Same-sex relationships and the ministry- some resources

The place of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender persons continues to be a matter of controversy within many churches worldwide.
In 2010 the Kirk Session (governing body) of Old High St Stephen’s adopted the following statement:

Our interpretation of the Bible is that God’s Grace is inclusive and the life of Jesus emphasized God’s love and openness to the powerless and the marginalized in society. Therefore it would be wrong to discriminate in the Church on the basis of sexual orientation.

This was in response to a request from a Special Commission which was investigating the issue on behalf of the Church of Scotland.
To prepare for our Kirk Session’s discussions, we held adult education events for members of the congregation. Our minister, the Rev Peter W Nimmo wrote a paper for these events, which deals both with the theological and practical issues facing the Church of Scotland. You can read his paper here.
Please visit this page again for more resources on this topic.
If you have any concerns about issues of sexuality, please do not hesitate to contact Peter.

Why we support Highland Foodbank

At the Kirking of the Council on Sunday 8th September, we heard from Lorna Dempster of Highland Foodbank. We will be collecting food for them at our Harvest Thanskgiving services on 20 September. We also collect food Sunday by Sunday.
Here’s what Lorna had to say:

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Imagining Scotland's Future

Imaging Scotland Future logoOld High St Stephen’s congregation, the Presbytery of Inverness, and the Church and Society Council of the Church of Scotland invite you to a community meeting to ‘Imagine Scotland’s Future’.
Explore with your neighbours and friends the values you would like to see in Scotland in the years ahead.
The meeting will help you explore by focusing on 3 questions:
1. What values are most important to you for the Future of Scotland?
2. How can we make Scotland a better place to be?
3. How do we put our aspirations into action?
There will be structured discussion at the end of which we will have produced a values based statement about our vision for the future.
The outcomes of the discussions will be gathered from communities across Scotland in 2013 and published in 2014, in the run-up to the referendum on independence.
Date: Wednesday 23 October
Time: 7.30pm
Place: St Stephen’s Church, Southside Road, Inverness IV2 4XA
Read more from the Church and Society Council.
Contact: Rev Peter W Nimmo
peternimmo(a) minister.com (replace (a) with @)
Phone 01463 250 802

Minister curator of @ScotVoices this week

Peter writes-
I am representing Scotland on Twitter for the next few days. The Twitter account @ScotVoices has a different guest contributor week by week, and I will be the ‘curator’ until Sunday. Why not follow the Twitter account. There’s more on http://scotvoices.tumblr.com

Sought by heaven- sermon for 15 September 2013 (Proper 19)

Old High St Stephen’s, Inverness
Sunday 15 September 2013: Year C, Proper 19
Texts: Psalm 14
Luke 15:1-10

Sought by heaven!

In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

Català: Gravat del primer terç del s. XVI amb Sant Anselm de Canterbury
Date circa 1520
Source www.npg.org.uk
Author anonymous (1420)
Wikipedia Commons

One of the brainiest Christians of all time was man called Anselm, a Norman who became Archbishop of Canterbury around 1,000 years ago. Anselm was one of the greatest thinkers of the mediaeval world, but most of what I learned about him was not in the theology class, but the philosophy class. Anselm wrote a treatise on the existence of God which began with the first words of our Old Testament reading: ‘Fools say in their heart, there is no God’. And he went on to try to prove, through a very subtle philosophical argument, that the were fools wrong.

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Chamber and organ music at the Old High Church

One of the conditions of the grants from The Heritage Lottery Fund and The Common Good Fund was to set up recitals and concerts in the Old High following the restoration of the organ.
After a quiet year in 2012 a short programme of recitals has been arranged for this year. It is hoped that over the winter a full programme will be organised and published for 2014.
There are two more recitals, at 12 noon on Satudays:
Saturday 21 September: Merlewood Ensemble
Catherine O’Rourke (flute), Margot Cruft (oboe), Isabel Paterson (violin), Alistair Nelson (viola), Imke Henderson (‘cello),  Gordon Tocher (keyboard)
Having been established for over 10 years, performing successful concerts throughout the Scottish Highlands, from Skye to Banff, the Merlewood Ensemble play  chamber music concerts by classically trained musicians who live in the Highlands. A versatile 6 – piece chamber group, performing a varied repertoire of music for strings, woodwind, voice  and keyboard including solos, duets, trios, quartets and full ensemble.
Richard SteeleSaturday 12 October: Recital on the historic Willis Organ with Richard Steele MA BMus FRCO FRAM GRSM HonRCM.
Richard Steele studied organ at the Royal Academy of Music, took a London University BMus and then gained a PGCE at Cambridge University. He is the son-in-law of one of our elders, Diana Fraser.
Donations welcome for The Highland Hospice and The Archie Foundation Raigmore Childrens Ward Appeal.

Kirking of the Council 2013- photos now online

The Kirking of the Council was held at the Old High Church on Sunday 9 September 2013
Photos of this colourful event, by Ewen Weatherspoon, are now available online .
All photos copyright Ewen Weatherspoon.
For more information about the 2013 Kirking, including the text of the sermon preached at the service, please visit our Kirking page.

A politician's dilemma: sermon for the Kirking of the Council 2013

Old High St Stephen’s, Inverness
Sunday 8 September 2013: The Kirking of the Council


Texts: John 18.28-19.16a (NRSV)

A politician’s dilemma

In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

You might think that today’s readings are more appropriate for Good Friday than for the Kirking of the Council. But whenever I read or hear the sequence of stories in the Gospels about the last days of Christ’s life, I’m always struck by how public the events are. Today we’ve read of the encounter of Jesus with the most powerful government on earth at the time.

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Cracked cisterns: sermon for 1 September 2013 (Proper 17)

Old High St Stephen’s, Inverness
Sunday Sunday 1 September 2013: Year C, Proper 17

Texts: Jeremiah 2:4-13
Luke 14:1-14

Cracked cisterns
In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

Next Sunday we’ll once again hold the Kirking of the Council service at the Old High Church. In some ways it’s a different kind of service than most Sundays, because it involves the local community in a way that most of our worship does not.

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