Edinburgh Bookshop (https://www.edinburghbookshop.com/)
Spektakulär - Scandi Pop-up Shop (https://www.spektakular.co.uk/)
On Saturday 27 November Spektakulär, who used to be on Colinton Road, is holding a one day pop-up shop within our main entryways and the McLeish room (central vestibule located at the back of the sanctuary). It promises to have lots of wonderful gift ideas and decorations for Christmas.
Spektakulär is a Scandi home goods and gift boutique owned by local resident Charlotte Brink, formerly located as a brick-and-mortar shop on Colinton Road. The shop is now fully online, and can be found at https://www.spektakular.co.uk/
We are proud of our neighborhood small businesses, and thrilled to be a location for these events.
Main Hall - The contractors have been contacted and arrangements made for the floor to be fixed at the end of November. We really look forward to this and the resumption of church life there
Falcon Road Flat - The Elders agreed to end the commercial rent for the flat. Now, by arrangement with Link Housing Association and Edinburgh Council, the flat is being leased by the Housing Association for a Afghan refugee family.
Max Carsely - Max would like to extend his grateful thanks to all who contributed to his farewell gift. He is deeply grateful for your help and says he feels blessed to have worked at MUC. He hopes to return to visit us from Berlin at Christmas.
Organ - Max has been temporarily replaced by Evan Cruikshank. Brigitte Harris is helping too. Meantime the Elders will look at longer term arrangements in the next few months
Online services - These will resume. We have purchased a new camera to enable this. Technology seems the way forward in the economy of worship post pandemic.
Romanian Orthodox Community - The shared use of the church on Sundays has proved very successful and it’s wonderful to be able to offer support to this large community of Christians.
Church of Scotland Parish Clusters & Mergers - We shall hear this month about future plans but meantime we seek to work more closely with Marchmont St Giles
Edinburgh Napier University - We have been approached by Napier University to look at developing part of the building for student wellbeing services. At the same time, we have been asked if Napier could use part of the Church for classes because of the shortage of accommodation caused by Covid.
Book Group – This month’s book groups will be held on 11 and 25 November. We are reading Lee Strobel’s book The Case for Faith.
Children’s work – The elders will be meeting shortly to discuss the children’s work and we will have new proposals for the congregation.
Coffee Mornings – These will be held on Thursday 4 & 18 November in the Small Hall. We look forward to seeing everyone.
A poem by Elizabeth Drew Stoddard
Much have I spoken of the faded leaf;
Long have I listened to the wailing wind,
And watched it ploughing through the heavy clouds,
For autumn charms my melancholy mind.
When autumn comes, the poets sing a dirge:
The year must perish; all the flowers are dead;
The sheaves are gathered; and the mottled quail
Runs in the stubble, but the lark has fled!
Still, autumn ushers in the Christmas cheer,
The holly-berries and the ivy-tree:
They weave a chaplet for the Old Year’s bier,
These waiting mourners do not sing for me!
I find sweet peace in depths of autumn woods,
Where grow the ragged ferns and roughened moss;
The naked, silent trees have taught me this,--
The loss of beauty is not always loss!
This poem appeared in Poems (Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1895).
It is in the public domain.
Thank you, Lord, for this day.
May I live it in the spirit of the gospel, Looking on everyone I meet with friendliness and compassion.
May I live it also in care for the earth, given to us to enjoy; may I be grateful for all the earth gives me.
Give joy and peace to all I meet this day.
I pray this with Mary, mother of the Church.
by Vishvapani Blomfield
https://thebuddhistcentre.com/highlights/vishvapani-bbc-thought-day-remembrance-day-meditationSomething remarkable can happen in a sports stadium when a crowd observes a minute’s silence. Those present cease, for that moment, to be supporters and become reflective and respectful. When a particularly significant loss is remembered – as when Anfield commemorates the Hillsborough dead – the silence gathers the crowd into a shared emotion. Then the whistle blows and hostilities recommence.
The minute’s silence on Remembrance Day this Sunday probably can’t match that emotion for most of us. Yet the invitation to reflect is the same and, here too, silence is a fitting medium.
The most intense experience I’ve had of remembrance was attending a weeklong interfaith retreat in the grounds of Auschwitz/Berkenau concentration camp. My grandfather and other members of my father’s family died in the Holocaust but my father was baffled that I would wish to go to such a place. When I found myself sitting in Berkenau, surrounded by barracks and barbed wire and shivering in the biting autumn air, I shared his perplexity. Why was I there?
It helped that we performed rituals and recited kaddish, the Jewish prayer for the dead; and it also helped that I had time to simply sit in silence. I sensed that I wasn’t there for myself: I was there for the dead. I was there to remember because the alternative was to forget. I was there to bear witness to the suffering of others because it was the suffering of the family, the world and the life of which I’m a part.
A minute is barely enough time for the chatter of our minds to begin to settle. All the same, Remembrance Sunday is an invitation to find a space in our harried lives for a silent opening to all that war has meant for the country. For me, it is a national meditation on what Wilfred Owen called ‘the truth untold / the pity of war, the pity war distilled.’
Attending to that untold truth requires that we become quiet, for just a moment, and bear witness to what happened. We don’t need to figure it out or think how to put it right. Then what? I think Owen’s word ‘pity’ is a clue, and ‘compassion’ – a word beloved by Buddhists and others – is another. We can’t force compassion into existence any more than we can force a flower to grow. But if we sit quietly in those silent moments at a football match, in a concentration camp, or on Remembrance Sunday, perhaps compassion will emerge; and, with it, a sense of what to do next.
The Link is a monthly publication by members and staff of Morningside United Church.