A message from the Minister August 2020
Given the reality that the corona virus is still around and that therefore, for many, it would be hard
to come back to church without feeling vulnerable and unsafe, it has been decided that the church
building is still not opening. However, actions are being taken in order to meet the requirements
to return to collective worship, when it is safe to do so. If that return would be at a time before
singing is allowed again, then nothing would stop you from doing, if you wish, what a bee does:
hum, as loud as you want to.
Meanwhile children, young people, teachers and the so many other staff supporting them, are
preparing to go back to school, to start a new school year. A change for all of them after learning
and teaching online, followed by the Summer holidays. It is an even bigger change for those who
move from Primary school to Secondary school, like Rachel Dagger and Daisy Lawson. It was great
that the weather allowed us to have our Kidzone picnic at Beecraigs Park, on Sunday 9 th August.
We were therefore able to give our children and young people their books, wish them good luck,
and have a lovely afternoon.
As we continue to move on in the new normal, we also continue to move, despite all the
uncertainties, within the presence of the One whose love is sweeter than honey and stronger than
a lion (Judges 14:18). This newsletter comes, like the previous one, with six reflections, written by
the different Braes ministers, covering the weeks 16 th August – 20 th September. It is our shared
hope and prayer that they may help and encourage you to keep faith in Him, who knows your
hopes and deepest fears, while saying to each one of us:
Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you,
and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for our souls.
Deborah van Welie
Since our last update we continued to run our Friday night Facebook Family Quiz
until the end of June. In total we raised over £500 for various charities and an
amazing £600 for company funds. We are having a break from the quiz for a few
weeks over the summer.
From 27th-31st July the Company Section boys should have been enjoying the annual camp at
Pitlochry, but unfortunately (like many things) was cancelled this year. During this week we
used Facebook to look back at camp memories from recent years and also set the boys a few
challenges. These included a scavenger hunt, design a crazy golf hole and a spot of camp
We have been in touch with BB Headquarters and are starting to make plans of how we can
resume all sections safely. This will be in consultation with the church and presbytery. We are
hoping this might be in early September.
Stewardship & Finance Update
The church's financial position has improved compared with last month.
During July we received the balance of a legacy which was originally
received in 2003. The balance received was around £4,500, to be used
on hall expenses. We also received £317 fundraising income from the "Pot of Gold" initiative, and
a donation of £200 specifically to be used for organ repairs. However, as the hall and church have
been closed since March we have eaten into our reserves by around £3,000 over 2020 so far.
The reduction in reserves of £3,000 needs to be looked at in perspective – our reserves at the end
of July were £121,033 – but the continuing excess of expenditure over income will become more
of an issue the longer it goes on.
A New Way to Give: It is now possible to make online donations via the Church of Scotland's
website, using your bank card. You can choose to give to a particular congregation or to central
funds. Obviously we are hoping that people will choose to give to Polmont Old! Members and
friends of Polmont Old who are already comfortable with online shopping may find this new
method of giving useful.
We are grateful to all those who have continued or increased their regular standing order
payments during these challenging times. We also thank those who have found safe ways to let us
have their envelopes or cash, cheques or direct payments into the church's bank account to
replace their normal weekly envelopes or "open plate" donations. While the doors of the church
are closed, the work of the church goes on locally, nationally and internationally, and your
donations play a vital part in this.
SUNDAY ONLINE SERVICES
There is an online service available every Sunday on our website www.polmontold.org.uk
or you can also listen to the latest service by calling 01324 468808, (local rates apply).
Don’t worry if you have missed a service – previous ones
are still available to listen to online.
Unfortunately, due to lockdown, the Fellowship ended for the session before the Annual
General Meeting could take place. It would have been during this meeting that we would
have decided where to put any money raised throughout the year.
As time was passing it was obvious that charities were having a difficult time with a shortage of
donations, so it made sense to distribute the £500 which was available for distribution. So on a fair
weather day in July, the Fellowship committee met outside and made the decisions to gift the money
to 3 charities, all of which have local links.
£200 to Strathcarron Hospice; £200 to Crossreach, who run St Margaret’s Home, and is one of the
Guild Projects and £100 to Meadowbank Cars 4 U who transport cancer patients to and from
treatments. Over and above these donations we also sent the money we were collecting in Steradent
tubes to the Guild project ‘Malawi Fruits’. This project helps people in Malawi to farm fruits to aid selfsufficiency.
The amount raised so far was £84 and was sent off to the Guild Office.
Whenever we are able to meet together again we will hold a meeting of the Fellowship to discuss any
Yours in fellowship
Pictures of BB boys on some of their
Rachel and Daisy were presented with a basket of
flowers to recognise their move to High School
Kidzone picnic at Beecraigs on 9 th August