The current issue of Life and Work features the work of the Kirk’s pioneer ministers, among whom are Rev. Dr Janet Foggie, now based at the University of Stirling but formerly the minister of St Andrew’s.
“Pioneering” is defined as going into a new place to settle or work, and even though my official title is Interim Moderator, I have sometimes felt like a pioneer during this past year or so.
Take the Caird Hall, for instance. Situated in City Square, between the two churches, it is the venue for many different kinds of events attracting different audiences. I have been there more often in the last twelve months that I ever was during the eight years that I served as a parish minister within the Presbytery of Dundee.
Recently (7th September) the Caird Hall was the venue for the National Gathering of the Guild, which I attended, along with several members from each of our two Guilds. Though the Guild is now open to men, women still predominate, if the attendance on that Saturday was typical of membership throughout the country. So there were streams of women flowing along the streets of the city centre and enjoying the sunshine as they sat on benches in the Square. Perhaps some of them took the opportunity to look around the V&A while they were in Dundee, or maybe the shops and cafes were more of an attraction. It’s certainly easier to find a vegan eaterie now compared to a couple of years ago. In fact we have one (Marwick's) renting the café space in the lower floor of Meadowside St Paul's.
At lunchtime, some people went along to Meadowside St Paul’s, where some of our own members were busy serving tea, coffee and biscuits. The hall was buzzing! There seemed to be a good mix of people who always make it their lunchtime venue and others who were new.
Going back to the Caird Hall, my other visits have been for concerts put on by the High School of Dundee, and also on the occasion of the consecration of the Bishop of Brechin, St Paul’s Cathedral being within easy walking distance of City Square.
Tomorrow it is hosting The Big Dundee Wedding Exhibition. Other events coming up are as varied as Frankie Boyle and the RSNO.
The V&A likewise has a full and varied programme, now including tours of the interior and exterior.
Why not come and visit us in the City of Discovery? We’d be delighted to meet anyone interested in becoming our minister.