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24 February
. Copy for inclusion to be handed in to the Manse as soon as possible

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- Diary Dates
- Coffee & Chat
- Minister
- Thinking Day
- Snowdrop
- Annual Meeting
- Stewardship
- Church Walks
- Gleanings
- Auditors
- Guild
- Malawi facts
- Watch & Talk
- Our Tent
- Life & Work
- Education
- Volunteers
- BBs

Previous Issues


The Bulletin

February 2008

World Day of Prayer Service 7 pm

Friday 7 March 2008 Congregational Church


Diary Dates

Wednesdays 7.30 pm Choir Practice in the Old Church Hall resuming 9th

Sundays 10.00 am Children's Sunday Club in the Old Church & Stables

Sunday 3rd :
MORNING SERVICE 10.00 am Old Church
service conducted by the Rev Fred Coutts

Wednesday 6th :
Coffee and Chat 10.30 am Old Church

Sunday 10th :
MORNING SERVICE 10.00 am Old Church
service conducted by the Mrs Rosaline Armitage, Blackhills

Monday 11th :
Watch and Talk Group 7.30 pm at the home of
Marilyn Samways, Burnview, Main Street, Cruden Bay

Wednesday 13th :
Presbyterial Council at Peterhead Old 7.30 pm
Malawi – Rev Donald Martin, Gardenstown

Thursday 14th :
Walks Planning Meeting 7.30 pm Old Hall

Sunday 17th :
MORNING SERVICE 10.00 am Old Church

Monday 18th :
Kirk Session 7.30 pm Old Hall

Friday 22nd :
Snowdrop Dinner 7 for 7.30 pm Red House Hotel

Sunday 24th :
MORNING SERVICE 10.00 am Old Church

Monday 26th :
The Guild 7.30 pm Old Hall
Food for the Mind - Sharon Rennie and Marilyn Samways


Coffee and Chat




10 January 2008

Dear Friends

I want to share with you all what I wanted to say at the final service conducted in the West Church on 30 December when the Rev James Wishart, minister at Old Deer, was guest preacher and assisted me in the celebration of Holy Communion.

For me this year, it has not been easy focussing on Christmas for no matter how hard I tried my mind kept pushing forward to today and to this evening. It has been a shadow over all that I have been doing since August.

None of you here have been in it as often as I have over the last 34 years. For none of you has it been such an important weekly part of your life as it has been mine – and that is why I have been apprehensive about the emotions that will be felt tonight.

You cannot be minister in a parish for thirty four years and not be deeply saddened at the loss of a place where you have attended various events and even more significantly a place which has been the venue for many activities that you have planned and seen through usually to a successful conclusion.

I am sure you all share with me a deep sadness at what has come to pass. I saw and respected the sadness written on the faces of all those who felt they had to take a decision which they would rather not. And that sadness has understandably been evident in many a comment since August.

Apart from a shared sadness, you will have different emotions being here tonight. Some of you will be here with no particular previous affiliation to the West Church, but because you belong to Cruden Church and you see this as an important moment in the life of the congregation. Some of you will be here because you have been regularly coming here – a dwindling number. Some of you tonight will be recalling important family occasions which took place in this church and which gives the Church a special place in your memories.

What memories will I treasure? I haven't trawled through the records to refresh an aging memory so what comes to mind today may miss out some significant moments.

When I first came here there was only a monthly morning service. Over the years we changed the service times never decreasing but usually increasing their frequency. I recall some of the services specially planned for the West Church involving the youth organisations. At one we had Aberdeen Football Club's Brian Irvine present. Organisations have made good use of the building once we opened it up with the removal of pews and I can recall interviewing Lady Aberdeen and Bishop Mario Conti in front of the Guild, not forgetting the interview of Alex Salmond to which he brought along BBC cameras and the Church featured on the following Sunday lunchtime political programme!

There are the family occasions I will not forget. We all will have different memories – mine starts with the memory of a funeral – that of the late Sandy Cruickshank – he was a real saint of God. And I also vividly remember the tragic funeral of young Walter Boyle, killed while on holiday abroad. The Church was nowhere near coping with the number who wanted to be present that day. I could mention many others. So many baptisms, so many weddings, so many funerals have taken place in this church since 1885 – so many memories.

Two events stand out from all the others. The centenary celebration of the building in 1985 – can it really be over twenty years ago – when all my predecessors still alive were present. James Bews, Charles Cameron, Stanley Menzies and Charles Miller.

Perhaps what gave me greatest joy was fifteen years ago at Christmas when the Rev James Bews preached at our Christmas Watchnight service exactly 50 years to the day after he was ordained to the holy ministry in this very church. It was wonderful to have him present to celebrate his golden jubilee as a minister.

With their Christmas greetings this year, his wife wrote

It will be James 65th anniversary of his ordination in Cruden West. We remember with gratitude the happy time you gave us for his 50th.
Times change and there is an element of sadness when a church closes but the happy memories linger on. “When one door closes, another opens” and that may be God's purpose in Hatton.

We must pray that God will be with us to show us his purposes for us in the present and in the future and that he will bless us now as he has so richly blessed Cruden in the past through those who faithfully served him in what we, in our time, have known as Cruden West Church.

Your friend and minister

Rodger Neilson


Sunday 24 February 2008 Old Church 10 am

We are delighted that once again the Rainbows, Brownies and Guides, Beavers Cubs and Scouts of Cruden Bay and Hatton will join us for their Annual Thinking Day Service.



Friday 22 February 2008

Red House Hotel

7 for 7.30pm

Ticket £17 each
to include 3 course meal & wine

After-dinner speaker – Mr Gordon Hay, Longside

Musical entertainment being arranged

An Initiative of Cruden Parish Church Social Committee



Cruden Bay Congregational Church 7 pm

The service for 2008: “God's Wisdom Provides New Understanding”
was prepared by Christian women of Guyana





Sunday 9 March 2008

(as part of the morning service beginning at 10 am)






Next month with the Bulletin will come the annual commitment card for members. Within the first three weeks of March, these cards will be collected by a church visitor. It is a boost to the church when our members participate in the campaign by returning a card.




We would like to say how much we appreciate the work done by those who take their turn to clean the church, especially for doing it peacefully! (because they are not clergy?)


Broom-wielding priests fought each other at the site of Christ's birth after rows broke out between rival factions as they arrived to clean the shrine.

The robed Greek Orthodox and Armenians clashed inside Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity. The cleaning session turned ugly after some of the Orthodox faithful stepped inside the Armenian church's section, setting off a scuffle among 80 priests.



All those who might wish to come along to this year's walks are invited to a meeting to be held in the Old Church Hall on Thursday 14th February at 7.30 pm to organise a programme of walks along with our friends from St. James Church. Everyone will be welcome to make suggestions where they would like to walk. Further information can be had by giving me a call on 01771 624280.

Robert Petticrew



Time seems to speed as soon as we realise that one day it will end

Memory makes knowledge possible. Before the present can be an object of contemplation, memory must capture it. This is why we must be careful about our present for every choice made will in some sense be with us forever.

Love everyone as a friend in order that they might become friends.

The inner self can be reborn even as the outer self decays day after day. Perhaps the strongest reason for us to search for our own inner beauty is that if we never grasp its wonder it will be hard for us to begin to love ourselves.

Our glory is that we carry within us the image of the divine. Our burden is that we carry that precious image in a vessel that is imperfect.

Passing events leave their footprints in the memory, and through examining these we come to see ourselves and judge ourselves.




Once again, Cruden Church is grateful to Mr Alistair Bain, Longside for agreeing to audit our church accounts this year along with Shonah Taylor. It will be a slightly different task this year because of the new layout which we are required to adopt.



For the Guild meeting on Monday 25th February, we have as our guests Marilyn Samways and Sharon Rennie. As always, you will be made most welcome at the Old Church Hall at 7.30 pm.



•  One of the ten poorest countries in the world with an income per person of around $160 per year: 170 times less than the average Scot's income.

•  Population (c.12m) more than twice the size of Scotland's, and land area around 50% larger, but economy only a little over 1% of size of Scotland's ($1.8bn vs. $139bn in 2003). Falkirk's economy alone is around twice the size of Malawi's.

•  Suffers from one of the worst HIV/ AIDS epidemics in the world with around a million people infected - more than the total number in North America and Europe and combined - and around half a million orphans: roughly the same number as the entire population of Edinburgh.

•  Life expectancy at birth has fallen from around 45 years in 1990 to around 37 years today: around half of the life expectancy of the average Scot.

•  Government can only afford to spend on average $12 (around £6) per person each year on healthcare. (Source: Statement by Health Minister Ntaba, Feb OS).

•  Children under age of five 27 times more likely to die than in Scotland.

•  Malawi is the country with the fewest doctors per person (Source: Guinness World Records). USAid cite this ratio at: 117,647:1 for 2002: one doctor serving a population equivalent to that of Ayr and Livingston combined.

•  Population growing rapidly: more than half the population less than 15 years old.

•  One qualified teacher for every 95 pupils, compared to one for every 14.9 pupils in Scotland (Source: National Statistics On Line 2002/03).

•  At today's exchange rate each British pound is worth approximately 290 Malawian Kwacha, making £2600 worth approximately 776,000 Kwacha.

•  In rural Malawi the average monthly wage is less then 4000 Kwacha (approx £14) - compare this with the price of a loaf of bread at about 50 Kwacha.

•  Average monthly salary for a pastor in Malawi is about £50.


Watch And Talk Group

Bishop Patrick Harris, Chair of Partnership for World Mission, introduced the first of five Sessions concerning Christianity in various countries throughout the world with the aim of promoting Partnership with God and each other. South Korea was the subject of the first Session and the video showed how the Churches in the villages and cities have quite a struggle to survive financially but there is no lack of enthusiasm from the members of the churches. They do not place a lot of importance in having elaborate buildings to worship in but are happy to meet in wherever a space can be found available for the groups of Christians who wish to meet for worship. On occasion people of various denominations meet together and provide areas for study for those requiring peace. Counselling is also available when needed and meals are provided for poor and orphaned children. The main concern of the South Korean Christians is their worship, study and care for each other and the environment.

Christianity was first introduced to Korea in 1890. In 1953, the Korean War split the country into what is now known as North and South Korea. While Christianity is still alive and flourishing in South Korea, it was not mentioned whether the same applies to North Korea or not.

Our next Meeting will be held on 11 February, 2008, at the home of Marilyn Samways, Cruden Bay.

Jenny McGarrol


Our Tent near Edinburgh

Do you remember what was said about this in the last issue of the Bulletin. Those interested in making the trip should add their names to the list on the Welcome Area notice board.


Life and Work

Circumstances have brought about a situation in which we currently have each month two spare copies of the Church of Scotland magazine Life & Work. They can be had from the table in the Welcome Area. If anyone would like to subscribe please let Isobel Young know on 812360



Under the auspices of the Kirk Session Education and Worship Committee, two things are going to happen between now and Easter.

•  Adult Sunday School Last year, the series on St Paul had an average attendance of 10 and the Church History series averaged more. The next series will follow a different format where, after a brief introduction, time will be spent in discussion. The theme will be THE CHURCH AND FAMILIES – a look at significant occasions which bring families into contact with the church. As before the Adult SS will be held at 11.30 am on Sundays in the Old Church lasting approximately ¾ hour. Dates and subjects are as follows -
February 17th Baptism February 24th Marriage
March 2nd Bereavement & Funerals March 9th Church Membership

On these occasions we will discover some of the history of these special occasions, consider present Church regulations and practice and what might lie ahead in the future. While there is a common theme, these discussion are quite separate so you can come along to as many or as few as you like.

•  Bible Study There will be a nightly bible study cum worship during the Monday to Friday of Holy Week at the Old Church. The first session will be on Monday 17 March. Look out for fuller details in the March Bulletin.



A new regular feature

in the Bulletin


We do need more people to go on the rota to help serve tea and coffee after morning services. If interested please phone the Minister (841229) for further information.


BB Parade on Palm Sunday

The annual church parade of the Buchan Battalion of the Boys' Brigade will be to Cruden Old Church in the afternoon of 16 March.




Rev Rodger Neilson
Telephone 01779 841229

Session Clerk
Sandy Beedie

Rosemary Pittendrigh

District Elders
Betty Forrester, Margaret Jamieson
Rural Robert Esson, Robert Petticrew
Peterhead Sandy Smith
Cruden Bay Jack Young, Kate Clark Betty May

Church Officer
David Singleton

Bond Treasurer
Muriel Cantlay

WFO Treasurer
Annette Garden

Roll Keeper
Mary McNaughtan

Presbytery Elder
Sandy Beedie

Child Protection Co-ordinator
Kathleen Craig

Life & Work
Isobel Young

Christian Aid
Mary Esson

Junior Church
Katherine Hyman

Adrian Smith

Muriel Cantlay

Betty Forrester

Cleaning Co-ordinator
Beatrice Fawkes

West Church Teas
Betty Morris

Old Church Teas
Mary Esson

Church Walks
Robert Petticrew

Transport Co-ordinators
(Hatton) Sandy Beedie
(Cruden Bay) Rosemary Pittendrigh

Press Officer
Beatrice Fawkes

Missionary Partner Correspondent
Betty May

Committee Conveners
Finance Rosemary Pittendrigh
Property Robert Esson
Social Muriel Cantlay
Education & Worship John Lamb
Membership Kathleen Craig
Outreach Wilma Moir
District Elders Betty May