One of the Tinto Parishes
We seek to inspire the people of the Parish and beyond with the Good News
of Jesus Christ through our enthusiastic, worshipping and serving congregation
Cluster Mission Plan
Section 1 - Five Marks of Mission
Through regular Sunday worship.
Church website and monthly newsletter,
A congregational Worship Group of 4 members has been established and provides focussed and informed leadership.
Being a welcoming Church.
Fellowship before or after services.
In conjunction with Clydesdale Youth Fellowship we facilitate the “In Service” days event for primary school children within the village.
High level of local awareness of likely need which is promptly addressed.
Members of the congregation engage with residents of the Greenhills Care Home in Biggar and Beechgrove Care Home in Lanark.
We seek to inspire the people of the Parish and beyond with the Good News of Jesus Christ through our enthusiastic, worshipping and serving congregation.
By prayer and donations to appropriate charities.
Courses for enquirers (eg Alpha)
Outdoor events and events in outlying villages (eg Coulter Carol service)
Special Outreach events – eg Men’s Breakfast, African Children’s Choir, Micelle Guinness
Christmas & Easter events
Prayer meetings/ ministry
Courses (Freedom in Christ, Tangible Kingdom, START, Prayer Course)
Working together with 2CYT
Sunday evening gatherings
Gillespie Centre Outreach
Working together with BCAG & Clydesdale Foodbank
Flower Guild outreach
Meals for new parents
Partnering with Christian Aid, CSW, TEAR Fund, Womankind, Save our Buses, Fair Trade
Working closely with St Isadore’s Roman Catholic Congregation
Teaching & challenging highlighting our collective and individual responsibility
Additional services eg evening services, Christmas and Holy Week
Funerals and weddings
Courses (Tangible Kingdom, Alpha etc.)
Gillespie Centre Outreach
Working together Clydesdale Foodbank
(both organised and organic)
Partnering with Christian Aid, CSW, TEAR Fund,
Teaching and challenging
highlighting our collective and individual responsibility
LIBBERTON & QUOTHQUAN
Weekly article in local newspaper. Church website. Worship Group leading Sunday services. Annual outdoor service in Quothquan. Quarterly TP mid-week prayer service. Quarterly TP Focus magazine.
Work with local primary school – Easter egg posters, potato growing & Christmas events (e.g. mid-week church service & Christingle making). Christmas card to entire parish & TP Watchnight Service. Tea, coffee & biscuits served after Sunday services.
Collections for the Clydesdale Foodbank. Elder pastoral care to parishioners at home & in hospital/care home/sheltered housing (e.g. Bield, Biggar). Weekly coffee mornings, annual Easter Daffodill Tea, old folks Christmas meal & Christmas ceilidh.
Publicising & supporting of Christian Aid events. Fair Trade goods sales & poppy collections. CoS charity stamp collections.
Worship Group services focusing on environmental issues e.g. in the lead up to COP26, Glasgow. Harvest thanksgiving services.
Section 2 – towards participating in mission together.
To be completed by Rev Mike Fuchel
Q3. Which particular common areas generate energy and enthusiasm?
Worship Leaders / Teams
Outreach with Young People (eg Holiday Clubs)
Outreach into the Community (eg Gillespie Centre, Messy Church)
Maintaining Current Church Fellowships / Communities & encouraging these to grow
Small / Home Groups
Guilds & Coffee Mornings
Q4. Which particular common areas are time intensive and produce little missional endeavour?
Weddings & Funerals [discussed how these were a double-edged sword – on the one hand verry time consuming, on the other hand opportunities to connect with people at important times in their lives. Discussed how increasing lay participation in leading funerals may be beneficial]
Maintaining Historic Buildings
Presbytery [particularly paperwork required and level of un-necessary intrusion]
[discussed that some of these areas are things that could be done better or in a more missional way]
Q5. Are there areas of unique missional endeavour in particular congregations, which are engaging effectively with the local community?
Schools Work [discussed that headteachers are key: Biggar and Libberton have positive experiences at the moment; Symington are allowed into schools begrudgingly
Libberton/Quothquan - outdoor service
Biggar – Culter carol service, Café church
Symington - Church & Community Choir
Blackmount – Messy Church
Q6. What do you consider to be the assets which each congregation in your cluster brings to the mission plan?
Worship Teams / Equipped People
Flexible Space @ Blackmount
Lots of Buildings!
Fellowship in Churches – distinct communities of worshippers in each congregation
Well Off Financially
Established Community Links
Q7. What new things can you do together which will generate energy and enthusiasm? Use around 100 words.
Locally Funded Ministry
Twinning / Linking with other congregations elsewhere in the world
Labyrinth / Immersive Experiences around Easter and/or Christmas
Section 3 The journey ahead
Q8. In one or two sentences and drawing on the information from answers in the previous section, outline the Mission Plan for your cluster.
United by Christ, we aim to get to know one another and to seek common ground in what we can do together as a cluster.
Given our rural situation, we seek to maintain a worshipping community in and pastoral coverage for each geographical area of the cluster, namely, Biggar, Symington, Libberton/Quothquan and Dolphinton. We will also seek opportunities to re-engage with communities in other surrounding villages such as Coulter and Elsrickle.
We will seek to pool resources and build on common activities that we share a desire to continue including: schools work; outreach to families, including through Messy Church; the Gillespie Centre outreach to the community; supporting the foodbank and reaching out to vulnerable groups who need support.
Q9. What will help you achieve your cluster Mission Plan?
We aim to get to know each other and build trust through social events, other fellowship opportunities, doing outreach activities together in teams.
We aim to maintain a unity of purpose through seeking God’s guidance and through planning together how we can reach out to other communities.
We aim to have worship groups / teams who work together across the cluster.
We aim to run, for example, Alpha Course to introduce people to the Christian faith.
We aim to involve ourselves in ‘secular’ activities to be engaged in our communities.
We will regularly ask the question, “How can we become the best team we can be?”
Q10. Which resources will you need to help you achieve your cluster Mission Plan?
We will need:
Worship Groups that will aim to: learn from other areas; become appropriately trained using the resource of a full time minister; and use technology to allow worship to be held regularly in each of our population centres.
Outreach Worker (Childrens and Families)
Pastoral / Social Care Worker
Our homes and dining tables
We will need a building for worship in the villages of Symington and Libberton.
We will need the Gillespie Centre to provide a church presence at the heart of the community in Biggar, which also serves people from the surrounding area.
We will need Blackmount Church building, as this is a very flexible space and will soon be the only community hall in Dolphinton.
Q11. Please outline the paid ministry roles which would help you achieve your cluster Mission Plan?
1 x Minister of word and sacrament from the Church of Scotland
1 x Outreach Worker (Childrens and Families)
1 x Pastoral / Social Care Worker
Q12. How would you designate each building within the cluster to achieve your cluster Mission Plan?
We aim to keep a building open in each geographic area.
We agreed that we don’t yet know the priorities for which buildings should close.
The below indicates what we believe at this stage to be necessary or not necessary to fulfil the Mission Plan.
Kirk Building – not needed to achieve the Plan
Gillespie Centre – needed
St. Mary’s Hall – not needed
Manse – needed as ‘cluster’ manse
Church – needed
Hall – not needed
Church – needed
Church – needed
Hall – not needed?
Manse – not needed although could be kept as a Pastoral or Outreach Worker’s house
Q13. Outline the steps which you will take to achieve your cluster Mission Plan?
Step 1 Share information about the proposed cluster Mission Plan to elders and congregations
Mar – Apr 2023
This Mission Plan
Annual Stated Meetings
Elders and congregations will be fully aware of what is going on and feel part of the process.
Step 2 Work out how we would need to be structured?
Ongoing – Jul 2024
Terms of reference
A clear approach to the mechanics of how the cluster will operate.
Step 3 Work out the plan to drive forward the Mission Plan
Ongoing – Jul 2024
Plan / talk about this until the Plan is due to be implemented
A clear approach to how the Mission Plan will be put into action
Step 4 Train additional worship leaders
ongoing – Jan 2025
Minister and interim moderator potentially assisted by Presbytery training programmes
The cluster will have enough worship leadership capacity to conduct services in each geographic area each week.
Step 4a Install streaming technology into buildings that don’t have it
ongoing – Jan 2025
Equipment to stream services, eg, sound system, cameras and internet connections in each geographic location
Further to the above, on some Sundays, one service could be streamed to the 3 other locations such that not as many worship leaders are required to meet the aim of worship in all 4 areas every week.
Step 5 Share information about finances between congregations
Mar - Jul 2024
This could be disseminated at annual stated meetings or at specially convened meetings
All congregations are aware of the shared pool of resources that will exist prior to the cluster taking effect.
Libberton/Quothquan and Symington need a solution to resolve their current lack of minister and to ‘dissolve’ the linkage with Cairngryffe prior to formally entering into the cluster with Biggar and Blackmount.
Mike Fucella to collate common points from all the responses [ca1]
I'll do that before we send it off [FM2]