Synod of Scotland Meeting Tulliallan March 2018

Friday Evening

National Synod of Scotland spring meeting was constituted by Revd Fiona Bennet (alternate Chair) and the Moderator who led us in worship. This included welcoming new members to Synod Meeting, new ministers and elders, marking ministers with significant anniversaries, ecumenical guests and our visitors to Synod Michael Jagessar and Steve Tomkins.

Revd John McNeil Scott was inducted as Synod Training and Development Officer.

Minutes of Synod Meeting in Oakshaw Trinity 16th September 2017, and Helensburgh 7th October 2017

These minutes were approved by Synod

Reform and Communications

Steve Tomkins, Editor Reform Magazine, introduced this and more will be heard at workshops on Saturday

World Church and Intercultural Ministry – Walking the walk of the way together

Michael Jagessar and Catherine McFie introduced this and again more will be heard at workshops on Saturday.

Synod meeting closed for the evening with worship led by North Link.

Saturday Morning

This morning commenced with worship led by North Link.

Business this morning included receiving committee reports from:

Finance and Property

This report was received.

The following resolutions were passed:


The Synod of Scotland meeting in Tulliallan aspires to raise through church contributions to the work of the Synod the sum of £33,000 as outlined in the Budget for 2018. This equates to £12.85 per member.


The Synod of Scotland places on record its thanks to Eastern Synod and South West Synod for assisting the Synod of Scotland in offering to provide manses for Synod staff.


The Synod of Scotland reminds churches of their legal requirements as Trustees and that:

  1. All manses are bound by the Synod Manse Policy whether Synod or locally owned;
  2. All member churches must have annual manse inspections; and that
  3. All churches return their inspection forms to the Synod office by 31st August of each year.

After coffee break Synod Meeting moved into workshops. Four workshops were available, repeated once to allow representatives from Churches to attend each one between them.


  • Stepwise and Days of Gladness and Joy. Led by Lesley Richmond and John McNeil Scott
  • World Church and Intercultural Ministry – Partnering for a just world. Led by Michael Jagessar
  • Reform and Communications – Led by Steve Tomkins
  • Exploring our Faith: God Talk – Led by Andy Braunston

The Future of the Synod Team (PPS)

Synod was updated on this: Youth and Children’s work, Ecumenical Officer, Transition Champion (Special Category Minister) and New Shape of Synod. An update was also received from Ecumenical and World Church on the ACTs Review.

Saturday Afternoon

Synod Meeting reconvened after lunch

Synod Meeting then adjourned at 3:00pm and the Scottish United Reformed & Congregational College Annual Meeting convened where the annual report and accounts were received.

Synod Meeting Reconvened at 4:00pm

Data Protection and Compliance Issues

The Meeting was updated on how changes to the Data Protection Act and Compliance Issues affect Churches.

The workshops of this morning were run again


Revd Jan Adamson received a presentation to mark her retirement last year and give thanks for her work in the role as Synod Field Officer and a card was sent to Revd Trevor Jamison to wish him well in his new ministry in Northern Synod.

After dinner the Link Gatherings were held, giving an opportunity for link groups to discuss the new shape of Synod and Local Shared News topics.

Synod received committee report from:

Church Life

This report was received

Revd Branwen Rees, convenor Church Life, was thanked for her contribution to the Synod of Scotland and wished well in her new ministry in her homeland of Wales

This was followed by closing reflections led by Michael Jagessar.

Synod then enjoyed a social evening of a quiz and ceilidh

The Moderator reconvened Synod Meeting on Sunday morning with worship.

After worship the moderator welcomed to Synod Meeting Katie Henderson Co-Moderator elect of Youth Assembly who updated the meeting on her role.

Children and Young People

The report on Children and Young People was received. This was followed by

Youth and Young Adults Forum

Photo by Bungie

The Youth and Young Adults Forum informed Synod of their activities over the weekend which has been based on ‘One Day’ and invited Churches to raise money for a local or national homeless charity and report back to September Synod. During the weekend the young people built a cardboard city which was particularly poignant when seen covered by snow on the Sunday morning and the blankets/sleeping bags frozen.

Reports from Synod Committees

Synod received committee reports from:

Ecumenical and World Church

This report was received


This report was received.

The following resolution was passed:


Synod, in principle, adopts and applies Equipping the Kingdom – an approach for mission and ministry across Scotland and the Policy for the Deployment of Ministry within the Synod, recognising that it is a process of evolution taking us from our current unsustainable position to one within which we can best utilise gifts, skills and resources according to our mission priorities.


Synod was updated on provision of cover during the moderator’s sabbatical and as part of this the following resolution was passed by Synod:

Resolution 2018/03/02a

Synod resolves to co-opt Revd David Grosch-Miller to be a member of the National Synod of Scotland for the period 12th May to 19th July 2018.

The PPS Report was received by Synod and updates were given on: Nominations, General Assembly 2018 Synod Reps.

Those demitting office Mrs Anna Briggs was thanked for her work as editor of SynNews and Synod was informed that Revd Andy Braunston would be the new editor.

Synod was updated on the Northerly Synods Collaboration.

The following Resolutions were passed:


The National Synod of Scotland accepts the PPS report.


The National Synod of Scotland accepts the proposed list of representatives to General Assembly 2018 as presented and authorises Synod Officers to arrange replacements should the need arise.


The National Synod of Scotland agrees the appointments matrix as presented in the report to Synod.

Church and Society

This report was received

With all business concluded, Synod Meeting closed with worship including include the commissioning of Brian Kirkwood as an Assembly Accredited Lay Preacher and a Celebration of Holy Communion led by the Moderator. TLS Certificates were also presented to Nicola Robinson and Derek McDonald.


Photo by Bungie

At this service Synod stood in memory of ministers and elders who have served in Churches within the Synod and have died since the last Synod Meeting.