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Lindisfarne Trip

  • 18 September 2013
  • jim.allan
Mark the Evangelist

Juanita Allan is hoping to organise a 2 night trip into Northumbria to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, and to Bamburgh and Alnwick. The trip will be tailormade for us by an Edinburgh travel company, Timberbush Tours. For them to be able to quote a price, the names of interested people are needed now.

The trip will probably be leaving on Friday 11th April and returning on Sunday 13th April 2014

It is hoped that the cost will be around £150 each, but this is purely an estimate.

If you are interested please give your name to:

Juanita Allan at the West Kirk of Calder

Jill Murray at the West Kirk of Calder

Lilias Fairley at Polbeth Harwood Church

Alternatively you can e-mail

There is no formal closing date, but the sooner you register your interest the easier it will be to organise.

The original monastery on Lindisfarne was founded by St Aidan in 635AD and the tidal island is famous for the Lindisfarne Gospels written at the start of the 8th Century "to the honour of God and of St Cuthbert".

Bamburgh Castle was purchased and renovated by Lord Armstrong (of Cragside fame) and is still the Armstrong family home.

Alnwick Castle, featured in the Harry Potter films, is famed for its beautiful gardens.

Parkhead Primary School Holds Macmillan T Party

  • 11 September 2013
  • liz.dyer

An invitation has been received from our local primary school, Parkhead, inviting members and friends to join them at their Macmillan T Party on Friday 27th September at the school between 9am and 12 noon.

There are also Macmillan posters in both church vestibules on which to guess the number of beans in the coffee jar for a suggested donation of £2.

As these are raising funds for Macmillan Cancer Care it would be great to give support to the school effort.

Minister's Letter: September

  • 30 August 2013
  • andre.groenewald

We had an absolutely wonderful holiday in South Africa during July and a bit of August. We had quite a busy program visiting and reuniting with friends and family far and wide. We spent time in Johannesburg, in Pretoria, and went on safari in the wild Bushveld near Bella Bella. We flew to George in the Eastern Cape to be with Nanda’s godmother and her family. Then on our return from George we flew directly to Durban where we spent a  week with my mother  at a beach resort in Umhlanga.  The boys loved the swimming pool and although it was winter in South Africa it was still 22C  almost every day.                                                                                                                                                                        

On our return from the resort, I had the opportunity to preach at my old congregation who were celebrating 80 years of witness. It was really wonderful to see my old flock and how the “bairns” that I baptised, have grown - some even taller than me now! We travelled to the Western Transvaal, where my family absolutely spoiled us and finally, on the last week, we celebrated my father in law’s 70th birthday in a game reserve. It was magic and we all had a fabulous week before returning home to Scotland.

I must say it was wonderful to return to our own house. The boys have been discovering and appreciating all their toys again as if they were new!  Work has quickly resumed and I am starting to find my way again through the parishes, visiting, counselling and teaching. But it is also the time to think about the year ahead and my hopes for the Parish.

After I read Isaiah chapter 43:1-3a at a recent thanksgiving service, it dawned upon me what God is saying to us living here in Scotland. The passage was actually given to the people of Israel as a prophecy of hope for their future.

At that point in time, the people of Israel were finding themselves in bother. They were exiles in a foreign country because they had chosen not to listen to God. The Lord God was merciful but full of justice, eventually allowing the Babylonians to break down the holy city of Jerusalem and take the Israelites to Babylon, today’s Iraq.

Once in exile, they realised what they had done to God, felt sorry, and confessed their sins. So, in chapter 43, Isaiah tells them to have renewed hope. God had called them by their names -  meaning He knew them personally;  He would be with them whatever befell them on their journey home to their own country; He listened to their prayers and would come to their rescue.

God also rescues us. God sees that we are all condemned and exiled sinners and without His help will never see His kingdom. So He saved us all through the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. Everyone who has faith will indeed experience the rescue operation of God in their lives.

And maybe this is what we need to hope for in this new session; for God to rescue us in all those moments we fall into sin; when we feel anxious and alone; when we are ill; and when life just gets too much. We need God to rescue us daily through His Holy Spirit when we lose focus and start worshipping the “other gods” of modern living. As a congregation, we need God’s rescue when we worship an institution, traditions and culture more than we worship Him as the Almighty God.

So my hope is that everyone in this Parish will experience the mighty and loving hand of God in the coming session just like Israel did a long time ago.

All my blessings,

It's Candy Bar Time Again!

  • 29 August 2013
  • liz.dyer

The first Candy Bar for the new session is on Saturday 7th September.

Morning coffee will be served from 10 – 11.30am and lunches from 12 noon – 1pm with a varied home cooked menu.  There will be stalls to browse around selling home baking, books, gifts and other items.  Donations are always much appreciated for these and can be given to any member of the Fund Raising Group.

We look forward to welcoming our regular friends and to making new ones at this enjoyable, social event which helps to raise funds towards the upkeep of the West Kirk.

Sunday Club Resumes

  • 29 August 2013
  • liz.dyer

SUNDAY CLUB has now resumed and we have been very busy planning our new session.

We will be exploring some fantastic Bible adventures and learning some new songs….which we hope to share with you all on a Sunday morning in the near future.

We aim to make this a fun experience for the children in order to keep them coming along bon a Sunday morning so there will also be a good sprinkling of fun challenges and some crafts thrown in for good measure!

Please help us by encouraging friend’s neighbours and local children to come along and see what we have planned remembering to make new children and their parents feel at ease and welcome in our church.

Celebrating 20yrs of Blythswood Care

  • 29 August 2013
  • liz.dyer

Celebrating 20 years of caring

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the start of the Shoebox Appeal and once again Rhoda Lawton and her team are gearing up to get as many shoeboxes as possible ready and checked before they are transported across to the continent.                                               Closing date for the boxes is Sunday 3rd November when they will be sorted and checked at Polbeth Church.

Rhoda will be giving details later, but in the meantime, pick up a leaflet from the vestibules, get your shoebox and start collecting the items to go into it.

For those unable to get to the shops, for the Sundays of 8th and 15th September, Eleanor Davidson will have a stall at Polbeth Harwood selling the essentials for a box at very competitive rates. Any profits from these sales go towards the cost of transporting the boxes.

Gardening Help Wanted

  • 29 August 2013
  • liz.dyer

Help wanted!


One is nearer God’s heart in a garden than anywhere else on earth’


Can you spare 30 minutes each week to help look after the church garden (no grass cutting, well maybe the edges!!)??


If you can, phone George on 871634.  - and thank you!


Holiday Club Review

  • 21 August 2013
  • lorna.graham

Over 50 local children enjoyed a fun packed week at our first ever holiday club "Showstoppers" held in Polbeth Harwood church.

During the week over 40 adult volunteers assisted in the care, fun and games provided throughout the week, and we had a full house at the Grand Finale on the Friday evening.

Feedback from both local families and volunteers has been very positive and encouraging, hopefully this will become an annual event in our Church.

Many thanks to all who supported us, you helped us make this the great success it was.

Sunday Club....Tell Me More?

  • 21 August 2013
  • lorna.graham

Sunday Club resumes on Sunday the 1st September after our summer break.  A warm welcome awaits all children from 3 years old to primary 7, older children are very welcome should they wish to help the leaders. We meet in the Church on Sunday mornings at 9.45am, usually in the best seats in the church "down in the front row".  After the children's hymn we all go out to the church hall for Bible adventures, singing, games, craft and dvd's. We end with juice and a biscuit at around 10.40am. Why not join us on Sunday September 1st and bring a friend. All welcome

Back To Regular Services

  • 20 August 2013
  • liz.dyer

This Sunday, 25th August, sees the last of our successful united Summer Services.

Sunday 1st September, when both congregations will be celebrating Holy Communion with Rev Dr Jonanda Groenewald, sees a return to morning worship at the regular times

9.45am at West Kirk

11.15am at Polbeth Harwood

Sunday Club and JAM Club also resume at these times and all children will be made most welcome