Newsletter Items

Letter from Alan Livingstone


Meadowside, Methven, Perth

January 2019


Dear Friends,


Once again it is a pleasure to greet you, in the name of Jesus.


We are surviving the winter not too badly and look forward to Spring.   Spring brings kinder weather, longer nights and renewed opportunities to be in church and to enjoy it.


I hope this letter reaches you and that you are in fine spirit. You have been welcoming to me when I have visited, thank you for your courtesy and encouragement.


I look forward to being your minister, your pastor and your friend for a long time to come, God willing.


Regards and blessings,







Tuesday. 27th November 2018  :  Annual General Meeting


Our Vice President Ella Clark welcomed everyone to the meeting and apologies were received from May Bellamy, Margaret Ferrier, Irene Stephen and Chris Livingstone.

Our Treasurer talked us through the Financial Statement and after some discussion the following donations were agreed:-


£500   -  Church; 

£50  -  Archie Foundation;    

£50  -  Dundee Audio News (DAN)

£50 -  Dundee Soroptimists; 

£50  -  Air Ambulance; 

£50  -  McMillan Nurses;

£50   -   Maggie Centre;  making a total of £800.


Office Bearers remain the same with the exception of the Tea Convener.  As no one volunteered to take this on the position will be shared by Evelyn Cox, Jessie Tarbet and Nancy Jack.  Ella thanked the Committee Members and friends, our Pianist, Church Secretary and our auditor for all their help during the year and making it so successful.


Before closing the meeting a special Afternoon Tea was held to celebrate Ella Clark’s 90th birthday.


Tuesday, 11th December 2018  :  Christmas Lunch


Our Annual Christmas Lunch was once again a success with 37 members and friends attending.  This year we opted for Jenny’s Kitchen to do the catering and it was a nice change.  Chris Livingstone introduced us to a new game - each table was given a felt  pouch with some everyday article inside and we had to feel the pouch and  guess what the article was and pass it on to the next table until we had guessed all the pouches.  This caused some hilarity and wild guesses but it was a lot of fun. We then had our usual Right and Left Pass the Parcel and finished off with our Carol singing.


Our Guild resumes Tuesday 12th February 2019 with Sing along with Burns.

Marguerite and the Drama Club have prepared some poems and readings and we the Guild will be doing the singing.  No excuses for not singing as the words will be projected on the screen.  A Scottish flavoured Afternoon Tea will be served and the cost will be £2.50. 


Tuesday, 26th Feb :     Sitting Exercises  -  Marguerite Ruffle

**WEDNESDAY 13TH March  :  ‘Making Music’  -

                                                                Invitation to Muirhead Church

Tuesday, 26th Mar:  GIFT DAY :  Caricature Capers  -  Andy Paterson


**Please note change of day.


Nancy Jack






  1.  WAKE UP!

Decide to have a good day.  “This is the day the Lord hath made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).

  1. DRESS UP!

The best way to dress up is to put on a smile.   A smile is an inexpensive way to improve your looks.   “The Lord does not look at the things man looks at.   Man looks at the outward appearance but the Lord looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7)

  1. SHUT UP!

Say nice things and learn to listen.  God gave us two ears and one mouth, so he must have meant for us to do twice as much listening as talking.   “He who guards his lips guards his soul” (proverbs 13:3)

  1. STAND UP!

For what you believe in.  Stand for something or you will fall for anything.   “Let us not be weary in doing good; for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.   Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good.  (Galatians 6:9-10)

  1. LOOK UP!

to the Lord.  “I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me”  (Philippians 4:13)

  1. REACH UP!

for something higher.   “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding,  in all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path (Proverbs 3:5-6)

  1. LIFT UP!

your prayers.  Do not worry about anything;  instead “pray about everything”

(Philippians 4:6)


(from A Basket of Gems compiled by Mark Stibbe)




by Jeffrey Archer

He was born in a barn, his father a carpenter, and his mother a decent woman, but they were of no significance and certainly couldn`t have afforded to give the boy a private education. And yet, as a teenager, he was arguing the toss with his elders and betters in the council chambers.

He never got a proper job, just roamed around the countryside, unshaven, and living off bread and water and the occasional fish while offering his opinions to those who cared to listen.

He became the manager of a football team known as The Disciples, not one of them a star,

in fact the twelfth man rather let the side down by accepting a transfer fee of thirty pieces of silver to play for the opposition.

The authorities eventually arrested him as a rabble-rouser, but couldn`t decide what to charge him with other than the fact he claimed he was the Son of God. They strung him up with a couple of criminals, and when he finally gave up the ghost rather assumed that would be the last they`d hear of him.

The Disciples were relegated at the end of the season, in fact the captain denied on more than one occasion that he`d ever been a member of his team.

When he died at the age of thirty-three, there were no obituaries in the local press reporting his achievements, no glossy supplements highlighting his colourful career, no radio programmes to discuss his legacy, and no box sets recording any of his miracles.

But then, he`d never relied on focus groups to advise him on current trends, or advertising gurus to spend millions promoting his brand, or spin doctors to sharpen his image.

And he didn`t require social media to keep his followers up to date, so you could be forgiven for assuming he`d be forgotten in a few days.

So how can one explain that over two thousand years later Jesus Christ is still the best known celebrity on earth?

Could it just be that He was the Son of God?


(These words were very kindly donated by Jeffrey Archer for use in a Christmas Card sold in aid of Cancer Research UK and give all those who read them much food for thought.)



December 2018


On Sunday 9th December, beside the newly arrived and decorated Christmas tree at the Chancel, our Morning Service involved members of our Drama Club presenting a very unusual version of the Nativity. Thank you Marguerite for directing this stalwart team of drama veterans – and young Alexander so very welcome in our midst. A lovely start to Christmas month.


On Sunday 23rd December our Minister Alan conducted a memorable Service of Lessons and Carols. The Lessons were read by 7 members of our church and it was such a pleasure to have George Christie reading for us for the very first time. Our organist Professor Norman Beedie had managed to organise an impressive choral presence of 10 singers in the organ gallery and three at the Chancel. The choir had been augmented by 6 guests and the boost to our singing was truly remarkable.


On Monday 24th December our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service was appreciated by a very full congregation enjoying our beautiful church and the heart-warming tone of the occasion with Alan`s Christian Message for each and every one of us. The refreshments and Christmas pies in the hall afterwards ensured many happy smiles as our friends wended their way home on this precious night.


Our new Minister Alan and new organist Norman guided us through this very special and happy Christmas for Dundee Congregational Church with many hearts being warmed by the success of these Services. This has been such a Blessed Season for so many reasons and gives us a palpable sense of hope for the future life witnessed in this special building. Thank you Alan for your leadership and thank you Norman for your musicianship.


Our Jessie: There are not enough words to appreciate the mountain of work at so many levels which Jessie undertakes for the benefit of every aspect of the running of our church. However I will mention particularly the exquisitely decorated interior with dozens and dozens of glorious candles enhancing the hallowed atmosphere on Christmas Eve. As well as these her flowers and aisle decorations were masterminded to achieve perfection as always. Our thanks are also due to Jessie, Evelyn and Irene for the three beautifully decorated Christmas trees which adorned the Chancel and both halls. Also we do not forget the support given to our church by her husband Graeme who willingly steps in both musically and as a friend when the need arises. The charming term a “Dream Team” could well apply to this special couple.




News Items





World Day of Prayer Service for 2019 has been written by the Christian women of Slovenia and the theme is “Come – Everything is Ready”.

The Service for Dundee City Centre will be held in St. Andrew`s Parish Church of Scotland,

King Street, Dundee on Friday 1st March 2019 at 2.30p.m. to which all will be made most welcome. After the Service there will be time to socialise in their hall with refreshments.

Mary Wightman

Chair Dundee District



Our congratulations to Dave on the honour of his well deserved appointment on 29th November 2018 as Hon. Senior Grand Chaplain of the Grand Lodge of Scotland.

We are also happy that little Myrren Taylor the youngest great-grandchild of Dave and Chris has made an excellent recovery from her illness when only 4 months old.



Mrs. Elizabeth Keddie has very kindly donated a special book, which has been privately published, containing a selection of some of Alastair`s sermons while he was our Minister. These sermons were taken from editions of our church magazine and initially only 30 copies of the book have been printed. This book titled “By Still Waters” is now in the Vestry for any friend to borrow and should be returned there so that it can be shared with other friends.

This is a charming, poignant and beautifully presented reminder of Alastair`s` ministry with us and was the inspiration of the late Rev. John Muir to honour the memory of his friend.





After 16 months of intense and gruelling treatment, and an operation, we are


all, to say the least, so overjoyed, elated and relieved to hear that our little


super hero grandson Lochie is “In Remission” and he so deserves this news


as he has endured everything with, what the hospital named, “his signature


smile.” He will now have regular scans and MRI to keep a close check on him.


Bob and I, together with David and Joanne, thank you all most sincerely for


your prayers, kind thoughts and concern over what has been a family`s worst


nightmare. From Logan a special thank you for supporting him when he did the


mud run and, of course, from the special super hero himself for always


remembering and asking after him.


God Bless from Bob, Mary, David, Joanne, Logan and Lochie




The Well-known Serenity Prayer


God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change

Courage to change the things I can

And the wisdom to know the difference.


and a slightly tongue-in-cheek version:-


God grant me the serenity to accept people I cannot change

The courage to change the one I can

And the wisdom to know – it`s me!



I was walking down life`s highway, when it began to pour

Then I noticed a sign that read “Heaven`s Grocery Store”

As I got a little closer, the door came open wide

And when I came to myself I was standing inside.

I saw a host of angels – they were standing everywhere

One handed me a basket and said “My child, shop with care!”

Everything a Christian needed was in that Grocery Store

And all you couldn`t carry, you could come back that day for more.

First I got some PATIENCE, LOVE was in the same row

Further down was UNDERSTANDING, you need that everywhere you go

I got a box or two of WISDOM, a bag or two of FAITH

I just couldn`t miss the HOLY GHOST for He was in every place.

I stopped to get some STRENGTH AND COURAGE to help me run this race

By then my basket was getting full, but I remembered I needed GRACE

I didn`t forget SALVATION, for Salvation that was free

So I tried to get enough of that to save both you and me.

Then I started up to the counter to pay my Grocery Bill

For I thought I had everything to do my Master`s Will.

As I went up the aisle I saw PRAYER and just had to put that in

For I knew that when I walked outside I would run right into SIN.

PEACE and JOY were plentiful, they were on the last shelf

SONGS AND PRAISES were hanging near so I just helped myself

Then I said to the Angel “How much do I owe?”

He just smiled and said “Just take them everywhere you go!”

Again I smiled at Him and said “How much do I really owe?”

He smiled again and said “My child, Jesus paid your bill – a long time ago!”


(with thanks to Bob Wightman who read this to us on Sunday 20th January)


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