ELF Poland – Day 2 – Saturday 30th May – Small Churches and Big Encouragements

It was strange waking up in  in a church creche – beside Tom Courtney – not my worst nightmare – just the reality of the glamour that is Christian ministry!  Our hosts brought breakfast into us – coffee, brown bread with cheese, ham, cucumber, tomatoes and jam. It was delicious – I really love the Polish food.  It is tasty, healthy and there are lots … Continue reading ELF Poland – Day 2 – Saturday 30th May – Small Churches and Big Encouragements

ELF Poland – Day 1 – May 29th 2015

The European Leadership Forum (ELF) is something that I have been to several times.  I have usually found it encouraging and helpful. It is a gathering of some 700 church leaders mainly from throughout Europe – although there is a significant American presence as well (especially amongst the organisers and the volunteer staff who run it) .  It has been a great place for Solas … Continue reading ELF Poland – Day 1 – May 29th 2015

God Bless America – Reflections on the Basics Conference at Parkside Church, Ohio

I have a confession to make.  I love America.   Yes there are many aspects that are disturbing and things that grate to a European, but I do love America.   Having returned from a really eventful trip to the US I thought I would write down some reflections before the jetlag wears off.  I had intended to write an update every day but that … Continue reading God Bless America – Reflections on the Basics Conference at Parkside Church, Ohio

USA 2015 – Day One – New York, New York….I Love it.

 Central Park A few random thoughts enroute to the USA for the Basics Conference at Parkside. Thursday 7th May – The drive down to Edinburgh airport was fine…and the renewed Edinburgh airport was much improved.  Customs and baggage check was a dawdle.   (no comparison to the crowded chaos that was to await us at Newark!).  It was strange to be leaving the country on … Continue reading USA 2015 – Day One – New York, New York….I Love it.

The Gospel In A Land Down Under – Part 2

This article is in the May edition of the Record We saw a great deal of beauty in the small part of Australia that we visited. A small cultural observation – in many of the beauty spots it was sad to see the number of people who have ‘selfie sticks’ and seem more concerned about getting themselves in the photo, rather than marvelling at the … Continue reading The Gospel In A Land Down Under – Part 2

Happiness is….a bike ride from Dundee to St Andrews.

We have had a beautiful week here in Dundee and so on Friday I decided to cycle to St Andrews.  Along with a flask of coffee, Annie Dillard’s ‘Pilgrim at Tinker Creek’ and my bible it made for a beautiful journey to visit our minister in St Andrews, Paul Clarke.  It reminded me of McCheyne’s visits out to see Andrew Bonar in Perthshire, when he rode … Continue reading Happiness is….a bike ride from Dundee to St Andrews.

The Gospel In a Land Down Under – Part 1

In January of this year Annabel and I were blessed in being able to visit our daughter and son-in-law in Australia. It is an extraordinary country, with a great variety of beauty, incredible space and nature, and a mix of cultures about which one could write volumes, even in a short visit. Sydney and Melbourne are two of the most beautiful cities in the world, … Continue reading The Gospel In a Land Down Under – Part 1

Australia – Where Europe and Asia Meet – Australian Days Six – the Final Days

Wednesday 21st Jan to Friday 23rd January This is my final blog from Oz – although to be strictly accurate I am writing it as we fly over Tehran. We left our hotel at 5pm Thursday and by the time we get home to Dundee, it will have been 41 hours from door to door. Australia is a long way away – or if you … Continue reading Australia – Where Europe and Asia Meet – Australian Days Six – the Final Days

Cricket, Coffee and Culture in Melbourne – Australian Days 5

Monday 18th January to Tuesday 19th There is a considerable rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne (think Glasgow and Edinburgh!). So having been to the former it was time for us to head to the State of Victoria and investigate the delights of its capital. Melbourne is a city of some 3.5 million people and continually appears in the top ten cities in the world to … Continue reading Cricket, Coffee and Culture in Melbourne – Australian Days 5

Sun, Sea and Sixers – Nowra – Australian Days 4

Monday 12th January to Saturday 17th January Just imagine you travel half way round the world in order to escape a Scottish winter and you end up with a Scottish summer – dreich, rain and coolish…At least that is what is was on Monday…but the rest of the week has more than made up for it. The weather is beautiful. For a Scot is has … Continue reading Sun, Sea and Sixers – Nowra – Australian Days 4