Afternoon Session

The Twitter feed remains switched off and we are no longer the most active discussion.  The amount of participation in the debate seems to have improved, however, and perhaps the Moderator may allow it to return.  The Sustainable Living debate has just ended with the team receiving a healthy round of applause and the Assembly is being addressed by the Church and Society Council’s representative on what we’ve just heard, and an invite to join the C&S Council’s group on Facebook so that these issues can be discussed and people kept up to date with developments.

Future Church’s debate begins at 2.20 and the first section of the deliverance has been challenged as not being at all suitable.  Suggested ammendments were not accepted by the challenger and a vote demostrated that the Assembly wished to pass it, albeit in ammended form.  Lively debate continues and one of the Presenting Team appears to be dancing to the beat of a different drum…although no-one but the Laptop Corner seems to have noticed.  If only Twitter was being broadcast so that everyone could watch Isbell dancing!

An Assembly pedant is ensuring that the Assembly Clerk and her assistant are kept busy attempting to stay one step ahead of a certain person’s pursuit of their typos.

The Future Church’s deliverance shows that ideas and beliefs about how things should be, the dreams we dream and the visions that God gives us, cannot be constrained by the arbitrary barriers of four separate debate streams – elements of the previous three topics have appeared in the different sections of their deliverance and well show that the delegates have engaged with all the aspects of the NYA2008 programme.

Some debate has arisen over the subject of CofS ministers offering celebrations of births, weddings and funerals, and that parishes should engage with people outwith the church who seek the services of ministry teams – not just offering Baptism but also blessing ceremonies as a matter of course to people who seek them.  The final section also provokes debate over the mission and provision of the Kirk in modern Scotland: should there be preaching in every church building every Sunday of every year?  Or do the current realities of life today, as well as how people engage with worhsip and their faith require changes?  The Assembly affirms the importance of the territiorial ministry while recognising the challenges offered by this commitment.

Ishbell no longer dances nor does she recite poetry.  This displeases me.

The debate closes at 3.10pm with no input from the Council representatives and applause and thanks for the Future Church team and the Moderator and Clerks.  After the debate’s close announcement was made of the the Youth Assembly Representatives to the 2009 General Assembly – good luck to them!

Allan Ramsay

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