Looking Back In Order to Look Forward

Its really quite amazing to reflect back over the years and consider how the role of ministry in St Andrew's Bo'ness has changed. When I arrived 30 years ago this coming Wednesday, with Martha and Sarah Jane, the church was closed for most of the time, except for a couple of hours on a Sunday and of course there was the odd meeting during the week. Believe it on not there were no babies and no creche. Oh its true we had elders who worked hard but the assumption was that the elders were appointed to assist the minister in carrying out his duties. Today it is assumed that the minister is the encourager who releases not only the elders but all of God's people to be involved in the mission of the church. I am no longer the only one who ignitiates projects and programmes and ideas. It is the responsibility of the whole church. Today the church is open every day from morning till night. It is always a privilege to go through the church doors in the morning and feel part of a team. A few of the staff will have attended morning prayers in the sanctuary, the office administrator will be on the phone, a young person may well be around our youth worker receiving a piece of advice or be involved with work experience. A young mum will turn up unannounced to speak to Dianne our family worker. A parcel will arrive for Sanctus Media our Production Company that works out of the church building. If its a Tuesday the church will be filled with the sound of laughter and music as the Tuesday Club have their morning tea. It makes little difference if your a helper or a client in the club everyone seems to be having a good time. each day has a different feel to it. On a Wednesday you can't get moving for buggies, yes you've guested its Parent's and Toddler. And the programme continues. What makes all this work is the commitment and the enthusiasm of the staff and volunteer leaders and helpers. They are all quite an amazing team. Oh we have our moments when we rub each other up the wrong way but for the most part i feel privileged to lead such a group of dedicated people. The most exciting thing of all is that the world has become a much smaller place. The developemnt of the internet has made it possible for people from all over the world to become connected and interested in each other. There are more opportunities to travel and understand and share with others than there has ever been. Today we were visited by over 30 ministers from Sweden. It was a great encouragement to me to think that God could be using a little congregation like ours to inspire others to become less timid in the things of the Kingdom. Mike one of our elders spoke with great passion about the place of prayer and its significance in the life of our congregation. Neil from Sanctus Media spoke about the future of church and technology. Virginia one of our congregation gladly turned up to be host and to welcome our guests with coffee. It was all a long way off from the first day I walked around the corridors of this building for the first time holding a set of keys in my hand and wondering what God had in store.

Posted By: h   On: 15 Sep 2011   At: 6:36pm

Albert @ family - Hope you have a lovely “30th Birthday” next Wednesday.

I always enjoy visiting the Branches shop whenever I travel through to B @ K Railway.

I am sure there will be lots more lovely happenings to look forward to - best wishes to all at St Andrews @ in Bo’ness toon.


Posted By: Derek Hughes   On: 14 Sep 2011   At: 8:13am

Albert, the Lord bless you, and all the folk at St. Andrew’s Bo’ness for your faithfulness and fruitfulness over 30 years.


Posted By: italker   On: 14 Sep 2011   At: 5:34am

Your absolutely right helen. We stand back in amazement. the thing is it is the story of lives changed and because of those changed lives others are changed who may never know anything about St Andrew’s Bo’ness.  the important thing is that they learn to know the Lord.


Posted By: Helen Faulds   On: 13 Sep 2011   At: 9:42pm

Amazing….I can also recall when all that you see today was little more than dreams…and God has done way more than any of us could have asked or imagined…..What an inspiration.

Leave a reply