The Edge is a Healing Place

I'm going to post some pictures that describe what our visit has been like here in Galloway. Galloway is a beautiful spot that is on the south west edge of Scotland. Its a region that is often forgotten about and I believe some of the people who live here feel that sense of isolation but also in a strange way I think many of them revel in the isolation. Here is a picture of Lighthouse that is found just a few miles outside  Drommore, it is  the most southerly part of Scotland. I think there is something quite important about edgy places, borderlands, places where there are spaces to think. If I'm right I also think that those who live in these places have something  for which others are looking and may well have a responsibility to reflect on how to make their experience more accessible for people who are tired, or busy, or perhaps recovering from an illness. I guess what I'm saying is those who are ministering in this place may well have a much wider opportunity for ministry far beyond Galloway. Talking about illness- we had an amazing visit yesterday to the General Hospital here in Stranraer they have a a drop in centre that is a bit like "The Maggie Centres" it allows people who are living with cancer or who are in remission to keep in contact with the hospital and be encouraged and supported by patients who are  dealing with similar issues. It was a great privilege to be able to speak with these patients and to have the opportunity to pray with them , at their request.  All this got me thinking how do we engage with people who are living on the edge between life and death and who are open to encountering the ministry of God's people. My encounter with all concerned was positive and indeed I discovered they had a walking group that they use as part of the therapy of dealing with cancer. [caption id="attachment_4707" align="alignleft" width="300"] The Covenant Kirk[/caption] This part of the country lends itself to walking and all over the countryside there are little country churches. I visited one this afternoon called Covenant Church or Kirkmaiden Old Parish. In 1638 the National Covenant was signed. This was signed by Presbyterians who wished to hold to the Reformation principles that Jesus Christ is the King and Head of the Church. When Charles 1 ascended the throne he tried to integrate both  the Kingdoms of Scotland and England. He wanted to establish the English form of Church government  which would have installed Bishops and also given the king the role of head of the Church. He also tried to promote an English Prayer Book. If tjis system had prevailed many thought the Stewarts would have taken the Reformed Church back to Rome. Hence the resistance to this change.  In 1638 the National Covenant was signed by many thousands of people in  Greyfriars  Church Yard. It was at this time the Parish of Kirkmaiden applied to Presbytery for permission to build a new church. Over the years this church has been named by local people the Covenant Church simply because the year 1638 when the first sod was cut. it  was the year of the Covenant. As seen at Kirkmaiden Parish Church In this little church you will also see the Bishop's Bible . this was first published in 1574 by the English Reformed Bishops. The Puritan's didn't like the translation. they used the Geneva Bible. When James Vl took the throne of England, he suggested an alternative version of the Bible be written. He did this with the intention of bringing together thenPuritan and the Bishops to work on a common project and he hoped in the end it would heal devisions. The Bishop's Bible was seen to favour the rule of kings over the people. The Puritan believed in the Godly Commonwealth, many of them were  developing the seeds Republicanism. All this makes me wonder we as Christian people, and church leader make greater use of these wonderful buildings that are dotted all over Scotland. I started to think what could we do with these churches could we make them centres of healing where people journey to for prayer and then a short refreshment? Well what do you think? [youtube][/youtube]  

Posted By: Mike Munro   On: 14 Oct 2012   At: 5:44pm

So many different types of healing now needed, not just physical. Emotional and spiritual too, probably even more so.


Posted By: Ann   On: 14 Oct 2012   At: 3:02pm

Relly enjoyed this Albert, your idea of a place of healing even to renew your faith.  passing it on to Gardiner and Jackie.


Posted By: italker   On: 13 Oct 2012   At: 10:40pm

Mike I couldn’t agree more. In may ways i have often thought the Church buildings are truly appropriate place for people to go to for prayer and healing. Heating as you know is one of the big stumbling blocks but not all together impossible.


Posted By: Mike Munro   On: 13 Oct 2012   At: 10:07pm

I believe we need to re-establish the place of healing in our churches, not only as you suggest but as church services too. Healing Rooms are providing this in our communities, but the churches need to lead on this more.

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