Parish Church of
Church of Scotland
At Peebles Old
Sadly, but in keeping with the Covid-19
guidelines, our Daily Worship along with
Sunday Worship is still currently suspended.
However the texts and hymns for weekly
services are available at peeblesold.online
In these changed times it’s more important that
we keep in touch with those around us by safe
means. As this and foreseeable editions of this
magazine will only be available electronically
please share the word around that it can be
obtained online at www.topcop.org.uk
You can also keep up to date
via our Facebook page.
When I was a student in Geneva in the early 1970’s, I lived in a
student college in Celigny, a small village about 20 Kms from the city.
Also in the village lived Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. Burton
spent a lot of time there, and occasionally came to dine with the
Principal of our college.
Our pub was the Hotel de Soleil, but Burton favoured the Cafe de la
Gare. As was fairly normal, on the day of his death he had spent a
convivial evening with the locals and his guest and fellow actor, John
Burt. At closing time, they crossed the railway and went home to the
Burton house, where he suffered a massive stroke and died.
The next night, le patron of the Cafe had a special offer in place. Here
was the very bottle from which the famous man had partaken his last
drink. Perhaps the customer would like to sample a glass. Of course, in
the circumstances ….. it would be necessary to charge a little extra -
The miraculous thing was the number of subsequent evenings on which
the same offer was made to any new face that entered the bar. There
were two suspicious circumstances. Firstly, it was inconceivable that
Monsieur Richard would leave a glass behind in a bottle of good wine.
Secondly, the level of wine in the bottle never dropped. Nor did it seem
to go stale with the passing days. Un vrai mystère!
When I think back to that fascinating time, it occurs to me that the
bottle of red wine could be referred to as “the gift that kept on giving”.
It’s an interesting phrase. It brings together concepts of giving and
receiving for example. There’s no direct biblical quotation that has
Jesus saying it is more blessed to give than to receive. But the Apostle
Paul is quoted in Acts, as he says farewell to the Ephesians “the Lord
Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” So it’s
a quote by Luke, of a quote by Paul, of a quote by Jesus. But I think we
would be happy enough to recognise something that our Lord would be
likely to have said. Another Beatitude really.
In the context, Paul was drumming up the Ephesians’ generosity to the
weak and poor. Who in the equation would be receivers? And it’s often
seemed to me that giving and receiving are both difficult things to do
sometimes. In the same way that it is sometimes much harder to be a
guest than a host.
In the current Covid 19 crisis - and it IS current no matter what the
crowds on Bournemouth beach imagine - there have been many
examples of good and bad coming in the form of good and bad
behaviour. Vast numbers of people have served their fellow citizens in
professional roles or in volunteer positions. And done so
uncomplainingly and bravely sometimes. While on Bournemouth beach
But speaking to people around the congregation and elsewhere it is
obvious that there are huge numbers of quiet acts of care and love that
far outweigh the selfish ones.
So the gift that keeps on giving, what of that? In the turmoil of these
times we could think of several words on which to alight. So I offer you
this thought. In every act of picking up the phone, extending an offer
to bring shopping, or go to the chemist. In every time spent listening to
someone struggling with the loneliness which has often been the
companion of lockdown. In these things there is love - the gift that
keeps on giving. And the First Letter of John reveals to us the Christian
response to Covid19, and the myriad woes of this world.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever
been born of God and knows God.”
Every good wish and blessing
John R Smith
A year ago this month I met with the kirk sessions of Peebles Old
and Eddleston as part of my preparation for taking on the role of
Interim Moderator last October. Little did we know what lay in
store for the coming year and this July, when we might have
hoped to be completing the vacancy process, we still await further
government advice on a staged release from the coronavirus
Earlier in the year agreement was reached that Eddleston linked
with Peebles Old could call a minister on the basis of a seven year
reviewable tenure. It was also agreed that Stobo and Drumelzier
would become part of the linkage. Back in February
representatives of the three congregations held an initial meeting.
The atmosphere was cordial and constructive, with points of detail
remitted to specific working groups for consideration. Since the
lockdown it has not been possible to meet in the traditional way,
but work has continued behind the scenes with a view to bringing
a Basis of Linking for the approval of all three congregations.
Traditionally church business is conducted by people meeting
together physically, something which is not currently possible.
Faced with this the Church of Scotland looks set to adopt a
Protocol in early July which will facilitate ‘ways of working which
allow us to honour the spirit and principles of the Church’s
legislation and traditions while allowing presbyteries,
congregations and ministers to move forward in these exceptional
times.’ In effect, this will allow for decision making meetings to
proceed through audio/video conferencing, including vacancy
Then, of course, there is the big question of when churches can reopen
for worship. Detailed advice has been provided by the Church
of Scotland’s General Trustees which includes a daunting 50 point
check list. Initial reopening is allowed under stage 2 of the
Government’s phased approach (where we are now) but this limits
access to ‘private prayer, marriages and other ceremonies’ – all
subject to physical distancing, strict hygiene and government
limited numbers. In any event, official Church of Scotland advice
to presbyteries and congregations is that churches should not open
under Phase 2. Phase 3, which would allow for re-opening for
worship ‘and some other group-based activities’ may arrive in
early July when the First Minister gives her next assessment.
However, while that may technically allow for a more general
opening it is unlikely to allow for worship as we know it. Physical
distancing will remain, thus limiting numbers; singing will be
discouraged due to risk from droplets which can travel more than
two metres; regular deep cleaning of the church building and strict
hygiene discipline will be required. All of this suggests that we
may need to wait a bit longer before a return to normal Sunday
worship; but we shall be constantly monitoring the situation.
Meantime I warmly commend the short on-line/telephone services
which John Smith has been providing over recent weeks, with
readings and prayers from church members, Sarah’s organ
voluntaries and the bell ringers. Indeed, on 21st June the Peebles
church bells, rung by Anne Derrick, rang out across the UK on BBC
Radio 3’s Breakfast programme. Thanks also to Willie Nicoll for all
his technical work in collating the various contributions and
producing a seamless act of worship. The services can be accessed
via peeblesold.online or by phoning 0113 467 8156
Hopefully, we will be able to move forward over the coming weeks
and months towards a new chapter and a new ministry shared
with our neighbours at Stobo and Drumelzier. Meantime please
continue to support the life and witness of our congregations.
And finally, warm congratulations to Malcolm Jefferson, our
neighbouring minister at St Andrew’s Leckie linked with Lyne and
Manor, on his appointment as Moderator of the Presbytery of
Melrose and Peebles for the ensuing year.
Grace and Peace be with you all,
“If you have been able to read this edition,
telephone someone you know who does not have
internet access and ask them if they would like to
know what is in it”
Remember that you can view the content of each
Sunday service at www.peeblesold.online
We recognise that not everyone has access to the
internet. So now you can listen to the material, too,
by dialling 0113 467 8156. Anytime, 24/7. If you
have a calls package from your telephone provider,
this should be free. Otherwise you just pay your
standard rate. The call will last approximately 20
How the Covid-19 Virus will
affect our church life
Church of Scotland Briefing
Church of Scotland - Covid-19 Briefing 17th March 2020 – Cancellation of
Services and other information.
The Church’s Covid-19 Task Group met this morning, and considered the most
recent advice from the Scottish Government, issued on the evening of Monday
16 th March.
The Scottish Government advised that people should minimise social contact by
avoiding crowded areas and large gatherings, including religious congregations,
and smaller gatherings, listing areas which were of concern.
Worship – Cancellation of Worship Services
In the light of the above, the Church of Scotland Task Group has agreed to ask,
in the strongest terms, that all gatherings for worship should cease until further
notice, with effect from Wednesday 17 th March 2020, or earlier if possible. Other
Scottish Churches are taking similar actions. This obviously includes Easter
services. Some Presbyteries have already instructed this action. This will
include, but not be restricted to, house groups, meetings for youth work, and
church cafes. It will still be possible for an individual to offer a livestreaming of a
sermon and prayers. Further information on livestreaming, including information
on copyright, can be found in the circular on the Law Department’s
webpages. Sunday broadcasts of a weekly service take place on Radio 4, and
also on Radio Scotland; other radio stations are available.
Church buildings can be kept open as a place for people to come and pray.
Notices should be clearly displayed asking that visitors observe robust hand
hygiene, including washing their hands on entry to the church.
The Moderator, the Right Reverend Colin Sinclair, has along with the Archbishop
of Canterbury, Justin Welby, and other church leaders, issued a call for a
National Day of Prayer.
The Task Group is aware that closing down worship services will impact on
congregational income, and we want to encourage people to continue
contributing financially as far as possible, and to encourage the increased use of
standing orders as an expression of ongoing stewardship.
The key phrase here is to minimise social contact. Sensitive conversations will
need to take place with families and mourners ahead of funeral ceremonies, and
to consider the size of groups gathering for funerals. It may be necessary in the
future to consider whether funerals should be restricted exclusively to minister,
immediate family, and funeral directors. In addition, local guidance from funeral
directors and crematorium staff will be critical here. It should be noted that
many crematoria have the facility to livestream services and to host a recording
of services for a period of time after the cremation service.
For weddings, the advice offered in the briefing note of 12 th March 2020 remains
unchanged; certain venues will be restricting attendance, and it may be that
couples have to work through what changes have to made, including in some
cases rearranging. Travel restrictions on travel into the UK will also have an
effect on guests at weddings. Again, sensitive conversations will be the order of
Pastoral Care Networks
Please find attached a guidance note from the Church’s Safeguarding
Department with some useful guidance about setting up small pastoral care
networks with a practical outcome. This guidance note contains a postcard which
may be useful. There are some good ideas here about small groups; such groups
can mitigate social isolation, and help people to continue to feel that they are
part of the wider community of faith. Previous advice about using tools such as
Skype, email, letters, greetings cards, Facetime, and Whatsapp groups are all
useful approaches and some of these are particularly helpful where people don’t
We are living in strange times and the thought that church services should be
suspended until further notice would never have occurred to any of us. Going
forward we plan to provide worship resources to be placed on the Old Parish
Church website and on the Eddleston Church facebook page. We hope that this
will offer some compensation for the loss of public worship. Meantime, all
members and friends are urged to continue their support of the congregations
through your prayers, service and giving and, where possible, to offer practical
support to those particularly affected by the Covid-19 virus. If visiting is not
advised a phone, skype or facetime call may offer some comfort and reassurance.
Peebles & Eddleston
What we’re up to.
Church Office contact arrangements
Whilst closed to visitors you can still contact the church office. By telephone
on 01721 723986 (number has been diverted to my mobile phone) mobile 07845
122356. You can also email me on email@example.com or via the 'contact us' box
on the website www.topcop.org.uk
Best wishes and keep well.
The Church has traditionally been open for private prayer, a feature welcomed over
the years. But now that permission is coming into place to allow us to do that
again, some difficulties have appeared. It would be very hard to provide all the
suggested support to allow this to happen. Two examples. We would be required
to have stewards on duty the whole time of opening. And there would have to be
cleaning taking place throughout the period.
But it has inspired us to look at another solution. We can provide material online
for individual people, sitting at home, who would like to pray and would welcome
some images, music and words to help them do that. The site would be on
peeblesold.online, but separate from our Sunday worship offering - and with a
different purpose. Of course, for those unable to access the internet, the prayers
would also be available on our telephone service. I hope that the facility will be in
place very soon. Full details in next month's Newsletter.
John R Smith
Good Life, Good Death, Good Grief!
For many, there’s still something of a taboo about death, dying and bereavement
in Scotland. We have to face it when someone close to us dies and we’re grateful
for funeral directors and clergy who steer us through the process.
However, I’ve been struck by how many people confide that they wish they’d given
these matters much more thought in advance and had considered different options
well ahead of a loved one’s death - or even had some of these important
conversations with family members beforehand.
In Eddleston, from before lockdown, we’ve been making plans for setting up a
community initiative that would provide support and information on a range of
issues concerning end-of-life care and bereavement. It is great that Christine
Donnelly and Jo Oliver have agreed to help me get this launched now, and we are
keen to hear from anyone else who has suggestions or wishes to be involved.
The idea is that it will be broader than just a bereavement support group (although
it would also encompass that) but much more a preparation for and information/
support for all matters surrounding death and bereavement: financial/legal/
medical/spiritual/emotional, etc. and we would have visiting speakers at the group
meetings. All of this, of course, is planning for post-pandemic gatherings. In the
meantime, we can do some preparation online.
You may have heard of the Scottish organisation called ‘Good Life, Good Death,
Good Grief’ (an alliance formed in 2011) and even earlier, the Dying Matters
Coalition (2009) both working for more openness about death, dying and
and you might like to see what both these organisations offer. They’re free to join
and have a wealth of resources. In the meantime, if you’re interested and wish to
support the idea - do get in touch:
Christine Donnelly firstname.lastname@example.org Text 075452 99539 .
Jo Oliver Jo@ijknowledge.com Mobile: 07867 977147
Pamela Strachan email@example.com (07837 873688)
As you will know from John Smith’s pastoral letter last month, I’m continuing to
work alongside him as your OLM with particular responsibility for the Eddleston
community. I’m therefore very happy to be contacted if there are any pastoral
matters you’d like to raise with me and let me know what’s going on in the village
so we can include it in our update online.
Revd Pamela Strachan, OLM
Glenhighton, Broughton, ML12 6JF
Tel: 01899 830423 (07837 873 688)
Eddleston Voices - thanks to Anne and Ian Rogers, the choir is continuing to meet
and sing online each Thursday evening (albeit with the mute button on at points).
It’s a joyous gathering and lifts lockdown spirits enormously. Thank you so much,
Anne and Ian.
We felt it was important to keep the Eddleston Voices singing as the choir is a
valued asset to the community, so we are having "zoom" choir practices at 8pm on
Thursdays. It is not the same as face to face meetings but it is the best we can do
in present circumstances. We are revising songs from the Voices repertoire and
also gradually introducing some new ones. The meetings seem to be appreciated
and it is good to see the smiling faces as everyone sings albeit to themselves on
mute! Anyone who would like to join in from the comfort of their homes will be
welcome. (Just send us your email address so we can send out a zoom invitation.
It is easy to do.)
As the song says "How can I keep from singing"
Anne and Ian Rogers
Good Life Cafe
An inspiring new community initiative is now underway following pre-pandemic
planning earlier in the year. We clearly can’t meet and enjoy a cafe culture yet but
the discussion and support group for life & death matters is well under way.
Happy Birthday Barbara!
We’d like to join with the many friends of
Barbara Crawford in wishing her a very happy
Barbara is one of our former Session Clerks up
to 2015 who we miss dearly, and of course due
to the Covid-19 Virus has been unable to gather
friends and family together as planned. Some of
them got together to wish her a happy birthday
through the Kudoboard platform which you can
Of course we’re too polite here to say which significant birthday it might be.
A blast from the past!
Some of the team at peeblesold.online found something interesting on YouTube to
help them while away the time between Sunday Services. Here’s the link below
which will take you to the page with a church service from Peebles Old which has
been uploaded by former chorister, Scott Rae.
There are three broadcast services all
from around the same time in 1984 and
they make interesting viewing as you
might see yourself in them. They also
serve as a glimpse into the faces of our
If you can’t get the link to work, simply
search for Peebles Old Church Services in
Grasping the Nettle
Grasping the Nettle is a movement formed by church leaders in Scotland to
promote dialogue within the church and society at large about belief in God,
especially in relation to science. These following are kindly taken from their
summer newsletter. You can read more and listen to interviews at
Where is god in a coronavirus world?
We might - and do - look at the wonders of existence
and marvel at the handiwork of the creator. But there is
a flip side. Does the suffering in our often tortured world
represent the indifference of the creator? With perfect
timing, Professor John Lennox has placed that question
in the context of the present pandemic in a new
publication. Hear his Interview given specially to GTN.
Professor Lennox is the subject of a new cinematic
feature film, Against the Tide, being released this year.
More details about how to view available soon.
Those were the days my friend?
And the song goes on to say ‘We thought they’d never
end!’ But they did! Pre-lockdown, the scene is very
familiar - as well as encouraging. Almost 200 people
gather for a Saturday conference at Maxwell Mearns
Parish Church in Newton Mearns for a ‘Confident Christianity’ Conference held prior
to the onset in the UK of the current world health crisis. Organisers SOLAS had
invited Grasping the Nettle to contribute two of the six plenary sessions. The topic?
Science and God Under the Microscope. Both were delivered by GTN’s Director of
Programmes. As the whole country suddenly went into lockdown, GTN - as with
every other organisation trying to serve the public interest - needed to find ways of
continuing to do so that were creative, safe and effective. ‘Necessity often fuels
creativity,’ said GTN chairman, the Very Rev Dr Angus Morrison, ‘and we are
delighted by how we have been able to rise to the current challenge’.
As I see it
A new Facebook Chat Programme from GTN June 1st. A new month and a new
format for GTN in the form of ‘From My Point of View’. Not so much an interview
but more like a conversation between two people who are very interested in what
each has to say, this was the brainchild of Josep Marti Bouis, the editor of GTN’s
Facebook page. The first guest to try out the new format was Rev Dr Liam Fraser,
GTN Steering Board member and Minister of St Michael’s Parish Church Linlithgow.
The topic? Science and Faith. Conversation topics ranged from why the conflict
model of science and faith in God is so entrenched in society to the question of
what can be done about it. The conversation was live on Facebook, but it was
recorded so you can catch up with the conversation here. Cumulatively, more than
700 people tuned in at some point. “For a first ‘outing’, this exceeded all our
expectations,” said Josep, “and it appears from the encouraging reaction that we
can look forward to more live presentations like this.”
Mary’s Meals - Backpack Project
For a number of years we’ve been contributing to the BackPack Project organised
by the inspiring charity, Mary’s Meals. Others have helped but a large part of the
work of filling these backpacks has been done by Janette Cameron - thank you so
much, Janette. At regular intervals, I would take a boot load of filled backpacks in
with me to The State Hospital, Carstairs to be handed over to volunteer Deirdre
O’Reilly in the carpark and she, in turn, would take them on to the collection
warehouse for Mary’s Meals. And so your generous donations and contributions
have made their way to many children worldwide who are lucky enough to have a
Mary’s Meals’ presence in their school and village.
Watch this wonderful short film which has just arrived. You might even spot a
‘Love Reaches Everywhere’
Although lockdown has temporarily suspended our collection for backpacks, the
charity is continuing to feed over a million children every day worldwide, and the
need is just as great for financial support. Children’s hungry tummies don’t
understand Covid lockdown!
Give generously, if you can, and enjoy the film.
Thank you, everyone, who has supported us over the years.
Revd Pamela Strachan, OLM
…as we move on
Here we are again. Not much seems to have changed
since my last article, although there is now perhaps
some light at the end of the tunnel!
As many of you may be aware, recently a team of
elders undertook the task of distributing offering
envelopes and we are most grateful to all those who
did so. I hope that now they have been received, it will
allow those of you who use them to fill them in the
normal way, although it may not be possible to hand
them in until we return to regular services, which looks
to be some way ahead.
Some members have continued to make their offerings by way of a
cheque. If that is your preference, either post it to the Old parish
Church at High Street Peebles, EH45 8SW or pop it through the
letterbox at the rear entrance. In either case please ensure that you
give your name and also say whether this to be treated as your
normal offering or is a donation.
As an alternative way of making offerings, a Donation system has now
been added to the church website. It is quite simple to operate.
Simply click on the button under the panel which says PLEASE
SUPPORT US IF YOU CAN and follow the instruction. Your payment will
be made to a PAYPAL account and will then be transferred into our
Until we can meet again for worship, we continue to need as much
financial support as we can at this time, but I hope a return to
normality will not be too long delayed.
Lockdown Food for Thought
Living in a Christ-soaked world
Fr Richard Rohr
An Infinite Web
Thursday, June 25, 2020
Author and Episcopal priest Barbara Brown Taylor has been writing about the
intersection of faith and science for a long time. In this essay, written over twenty
years ago, she was already exploring a new cosmology, one that honored her deep
understanding of both God and the workings of the universe. She has the courage
and conviction to ask hard questions and wrestle with them alongside us. Her
insight into God’s unifying and enlivening presence has much in common with the
mystics. As Franciscan theologian Bonaventure described, God is One “whose
center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.” 
In Sunday school, I learned to
think of God as a very old
white-bearded man on a
throne, who stood above
creation and occasionally
stirred it with a stick. When I
am dreaming quantum
dreams, what I see is an
infinite web of relationship,
flung across the vastness of
space like a luminous net. It is made of energy, not thread. As I look, I can see
light moving through it as a pulse moves through veins. What I see “out there” is
no different from what I feel inside. There is a living hum that might be coming
from my neurons but might just as well be coming from the furnace of the stars.
When I look up at them there is a small commotion in my bones, as the ashes of
dead stars that house my marrow rise up like metal filings toward the magnet of
their living kin.
Where am I in this picture? I am all over the place. I am up there, down here,
inside my skin and out. I am large compared to a virus and small compared to the
sun, with a life that is permeable to them both. Am I alone? How could I ever be
alone? I am part of a web that is pure relationship, with energy available to me
that has been around since the universe was born.
Where is God in this picture? God is all over the place. God is up there, down here,
inside my skin and out. God is the web, the energy, the space, the light—not
captured in them, as if any of those concepts were more real than what unites
them - but revealed in that singular, vast net of relationship that animates
everything that is.
At this point in my thinking, it is not enough for me to proclaim that God is
responsible for all this unity. Instead, I want to proclaim that God is the unity - the
very energy, the very intelligence, the very elegance and passion that make it all
go. This is the God who is not somewhere but everywhere, the God who may be
prayed to in all directions at once. This is also the God beyond all directions, who
will still be here (wherever “here” means) when the universe either dissipates into
dust or swallows itself up again.
Gateway to Action & Contemplation:
What word or phrase resonates with or challenges me? What sensations do I notice
in my body? What is mine to do?
Prayer for Our Community:
O Great Love, thank you for living and loving in us and through us. May all that we
do flow from our deep connection with you and all beings. Help us become a
community that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens and the weight of glory.
Listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our world. [Please add your own
intentions.] . . . Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking, we offer
these prayers in all the holy names of God, amen.
Listen to Fr. Richard read the prayer.
Story from Our Community:
I wait for the ruby-throated hummingbirds to arrive. They are amazing birds, so
tiny, and highly energetic. They have beautiful iridescent plumage which reflects
the sunshine. They drink nectar from flowers and eat bugs caught mid-air for
protein. The Wild Red Columbine blooms in time with the arrival of these
hummingbirds. These two species are in a mutually beneficial relationship, tubular
columbine flowers are pollinated, hummers are fed. I like to understand how God
has encouraged this. God seeks nourishing relationships. –Fawn P.
 Bonaventure, The Soul’s Journey into God, 5.8, quoting Alan of Lille, Regulae
Theologicae, reg. 7. See Bonaventure, trans. Ewert Cousins (Paulist Press: 1978),
Barbara Brown Taylor, The Luminous Web: Essays on Science and Religion (Cowley
Publications: 2000), 73–74.
Image Credit: Una “rete” di rami all’Arte Sella (Wood and Art in the Forest of
Italy) (detail), 2008, Arte Sella, Trento, Italy.
Words of Wisdom
In Spite of the Circumstances God is With You
‘I will never leave you nor forsake you’ Hebrews 13:5 NKJV
Several times in one chapter, Genesis 39, the Bible tells us that the Lord
was with Joseph. But that didn’t exempt him from jealousy and
betrayal, or the advances of Potiphar’s wife, or her lies that sent him to
The Bible says, ‘They bruised his feet with fetters and placed his neck in
an iron collar. Until the time came to fulful his dreams, the Lord tested
Joseph’s character’ (Psalm 105:18-19 NLT). Joseph didn’t know it, but
he was in training for reigning. God
wanted to see if he would choose
trust over lust, and obedience over
It’s in looking back that you realise
why one of God’s names is
‘Redeemer’. He can redeem
everything you’ve been through –
the good, the bad, the ugly. The
lesson Joseph learned is this: God is
with you even when there is no
evidence He is. He is walking
alongside you. He is working with
you. He is going ahead of you to rearrange circumstances in your
favour. His words says, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So that
we may boldly say: ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can
man do to me?’ (Hebrews 13:5-6 NKJV).
This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND
But sometimes in the plan of God things get worse before they get
better. That’s when you must tighten your grip and lean harder on God:
‘Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.
For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of
God, you may receive the promise’. (Hebrews 10:35-36)
This is reproduced with kind permission from United Christian Broadcasters (UCB)
Word for Today. Copies can be obtained from them at UCB Operations Centre,
Westport Road, Stoke on Trent, ST6 4JF
They can be reached on 0845 6040401 or at www.ucb.co.uk
More tea Vicar?
Thoughts on the lockdown.
Yesterday my husband thought he saw a cockroach in the kitchen. He sprayed
everything down and cleaned thoroughly. Today I’m putting the cockroach in the
I cycled to the local shop for a bottle
of gin so we didn’t run out during
lockdown but as I put it in my basket
I thought, what if I fall off my bike
and break it? So I drank it all outside
the shop. Good thing I did as I fell off
the bike 6 times on the cycle home.
I need to practise social-distancing –
from my refrigerator
For the first time in history, we can
help save the human race by lying in
front of the TV and doing
nothing. Let’s not mess this one up!
While waiting in a socially distanced
queue early one morning for the
supermarket to open for us ‘seniors’,
I was surprised to see a young man
saunter along and try to cut in at the
front of the queue. A furious old lady
waved her cane at him, and he
quickly backed away.
A moment later, the young man tried again. He managed to dodge the old lady,
but then two old men started shouting at him. Again, the young man backed away.
But he wasn’t giving up, and soon the young man approached the queue for the
third time. By now, all of us pensioners were ready for him, an angry wall of
The young man stood there for a moment, and then shrugged his shoulders. “If
you people won’t let me unlock the door, none of you will ever get in to shop.”
Lost in translation
Last year, some friends took their six-year-old on a car trip to France. To help pass
the time on the way down to the Channel, they encouraged their son to practise his
new reading skills by calling out road signs.
He fell asleep just before they entered France. When he awoke, he saw the French
motorway signs and rubbed his eyes. In a worried tone he whispered, “I think I
forgot how to read while I was asleep.”
can you be part of this Magazine?
This is your magazine!
We’re looking out for travel stories, life stories, recipes, jokes and articles that
would brighten up our magazine pages. People are at home just now with some
extra time to read so now’s your chance for literary recognition!
Just think you could see your own thoughts and
words in print and be able to share the things that
inspire you about life, worship, travel, cooking, or
even The Old Parish Church itself.
We can even help you with the scanning of
photographs if you don’t have them electronically
and if you ask nicely we can arrange for articles to
be typed up from your own notes or ideas.
So why not get in touch with me as detailed below
or simply e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Would you like your own copy each month?
Well help is at hand… just fill in and post this form!
Miss Fiona Taylor, 12 Graham Street, Peebles EH45 8JP Tel. 01721 724196
Your name ……………………………………………………………………
Although we’re only online for the moment your donation would still be
gratefully received. I’m happy to enclose a donation of £….... towards the
cost of the Magazine.
Please make cheques payable to “Peebles Old Parish Church of Scotland”
Without any services in the church there will be no rotas required. However, our
intrepid bell ringing team continue to cheer us up by ringing on Sunday mornings
as you’ll see below.
THE BELL RINGERS
July 5 Kirsty Davidson
12 Anne Derrick
19 Rosalie Gibson
26 Margaret Anderson
Our brave bell ringers (as heard on
BBC Radio 3 no less…see the pastoral
letter) are to carry on raising our
spirits by ringing out from the tower on
Sunday Mornings. Keeping safe but
spreading some cheer.
14 th June Mary Guthrie Sinclair, Riverside House, Peebles (formerly of
A very warm welcome to
You’ll receive a warm welcome at any of our groups, whose details are given and
whose activities will recommence when we are finally out of full lockdown. For
further information about each organisation, please see our website
Group Where and when we meet Contact
Song School but currently by Zoom!
Thursdays 7.30-9.00pm (not July and
We meet in the MacFarlane Hall, once
a month at 2pm on a Sunday
afternoon. Dates will be announced.
Meets once a year as a whole group,
Members take their turn at arranging
the flowers in church each week and
at major religious festivals.
Members take their turn on the
Sunday Bell ringing rota and ring on
other community occasions if they
Members meet together twice a year.
The Guild visits housebound members
of the congregation. The number of
homes and frequency of visits is
flexible and can easily be arranged to
suit the availability of the Visitor
Members take turns at the purposebuilt
cupboard selling Fairtrade goods
after morning worship each Sunday
Help to provide ideas for each of us to
better care for God’s creation.
Tuesdays in school terms. 9.30-
Friday mornings. Join a team taking
your turn preparing and serving
Bacon Rolls. Each team is ‘on’ once
every 6 weeks. Great fun!
(Director of Music)
Please speak to the
Minister or Session
Who’s Who at Peebles & Eddleston
Very Rev Dr Finlay A J Macdonald
8 St Ronan’s Way
01896 831631 07770 587501
Rev John R. Smith MA BD
25 Whitehaugh Park
Ordained Local Minister:
Rev. Pamela Strachan
Organist & Choir Leader:
41 March Street, Peebles
Office: 01721 723986
41 Dukehaugh, Peebles.
Roll Keeper/Data Officer:
Eco Church Co-ordinator
Edderston Road, Peebles
Registered charities (Peebles) SC013316 (Eddleston) SC010081