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Seeds encourage | inspire | challenge | No. 1 | July-August 2010

Augustine United Church, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL 0131 220 1677 Scottish Charity no. SC000385 Minister: Rev. Fiona Bennett 07552 162 717 Church Administrator: Paul Lugton 0131 220 1677 Editor: Bill Stevenson Designer: Sonja Meyer

In this edition 1 Seeds of hope. 2 Social events and notices. 3 Eco congregations. What can you do about climate change? Gardening this summer. Who wil save the people? 4 Church Calendar. AUC Newsletter’s new name.

Read all about the AUC Newsletter’s new name on the back page!

Seeds of hope Even in darkest situations it appears that seeds of hope can grow. By Fiona Bennett Along with millions of people, I was very distressed at the end of May to learn of the deaths of those on the ship bringing aid into Gaza. Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories are the partner countries which AUC has chosen for this year to learn about, learn from and pray for, in our support to Commitment for Life. My first visit to Palestine / Israel was in 1991. Nearly 20 years later and things seem to be worse rather than better. However, even in darkest situations it appears that seeds of hope can grow. I would invite you to read the article ‘Painting for Pride’ on page 2, sharing some of the story of the project the Arab Human Rights Association. This is one of the partners whom we are connected with through Commitment for Life, in our prayers, action and giving. In the article we hear from an eighteen-year-old boy, Haytham, who, despite encountering many horrific experiences in life, has chosen to be an agent of change rather than an agent of hatred.

It must be very tempting, if so many of our family or friends had been demeaned and injured, to either sit in despair or to allow anger and hatred to consume. Haytham has chosen to do neither, but to help others and to work for a better future. As we pray, act and give to support Haytham and the Arab Human Rights Association, I hope we will be inspired and encouraged, whether in the challenges of daily life or as we think about the global politics, not to sit in despair or be consumed by destructive anger, but to live with hope as agents of change, trusting that even in the darkest places God will help the seeds of justice and wholeness to grow. The Commitment for Life website is at: we do/ commitmentforlife/docs/ march2010updates/iopt

Seeds | Social Events

Social Events and Notices Innocent Walk Sunday 25th July – After service guided walk along Innocent Railway leaving AUC 1.15 (4 miles flat route).

Fringe Theatre Trip Monday 9th August 2010 Maxwell has organised 12 tickets to the Saughtonhall URC Drama Group’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe production of the West End hit “Pack of Lies”. Based on a true story, the play is set in the cold war period of the 1960’s. A loyalty tug–of–war between country and friends is at the heart of the dilemma facing the Jackson family. Tickets are at the discounted price of £4 (usual price £7). Doors open at 7pm. Show starts at 7.30pm. If you would like to reserve a ticket, please speak to Maxwell or Mandy Scott; or email Maxwell at:

Inchcolm “ The Local Church “ our LEP, will hold its next Joint Service on 27 August in the Abbey on the Island of Inchcolm, in the Firth of Forth. We meet on the Quay in South Queensferry at 10.00am and return about 1.00pm. After the service there is time for a picnic or a short wander . Public transport: by bus, Stagecoach No,55, from the Dome, in George Street at 9.09 am to the Road Bridge, arriving at 9.35 am, with a walk to the quay; by train, 2  July-August 2010

from Waverley Station, the Dundee train leaving at 9.15am and arriving at Dalmeny at 9.30am with a similar (16/17minute) walk. A taxi would need to be pre-booked. Any later buses or trains are too late. Times to be confirmed. However, it is possible that we will be able to arrange car sharing.

beforehand, and the minutes soon afterwards, please indicate this to Paul at the same time, and he will organise their distribution by this means. Printed copies will continue to be available as now but this will be more convenient and quicker for those interested. Paul’s e-mail address: John Brockington

Notes on Housekeeping

This is a really memorable day, no matter what the weather; and we are able to do it for £10 per adult, and probably less than £3 per child. Please book a place as soon as you can. Doris is taking Augustine’s names.

Loud and Proud charity concert for Waverley Care 28th August, Greyfriars Kirk, 8.30 - 9.00. Tickets £12.00 (£10.00 concession)Meet at AUC 7.30.

Church Meeting Agenda and Minutes Will those with an email address please let Paul have a note of it for the office directory, if they have not already done so? In addition, if you would like to receive by email the Church Meeting agenda

Those who are on Communion duty are responsible for collecting glasses, washing them (in the dishwasher) and putting away. The plate (chalice, etc., are kept in the vestry cupboard. Cloths should be taken home for laundering or given to Della. The glasses are stored in the cupboard (at right- angle to the dishwasher). Those who are on door duty are responsible for clearing and washing cups etc (in the dishwasher). Dishes should not be dried; they should dry from the heat of the water. Thank you.

Volunteer duties Please will all those helping with duties on a Sunday let me have a note of any dates when they are not available during August, September and October; since we are away in the middle of July, please let me know by 11th July. Further volunteers for any of the duties are always welcome and I shall be pleased to give any information needed about what is involved. John Brockington

Eco congregations

Environment | Seeds

Good energy management means good financial sense.

In May, I attended the Eco-Congregation meeting arranged with those attending the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. Before attending the meeting, I had obtained from Tom Murray, our Treasurer, meter readings for our electricity consumption at AUC for the year up to January, 2009. We had used 109,410 Kilowatt hours of electricity. After a simple calculation (which was explained to the huge numbers of people who attended this meeting,) this means that the carbon we emitted from AUC, when combined with oxygen from the atmosphere, created a staggering 58.7 Tonnes of Carbon Dioxide - in just that one year. The Church of Scotland wants its congregations to commit to 5% reductions in carbon output each year in an effort to reach a reduction of 80% by 2050. Could we promise to do the same? Rev.Ewan Aitken emphasised, at the start of pro-

What can you do about climate change? From the Spring Newsletter of the Church & Society Council of the Church of Scotland 1. Think about your life and your beliefs. 2. Be aware. Find out the facts. 3. Get involved. Join a group. 4. Cut your fuel bills. 5. Make your house a model of efficiency. 6. Don’t shop till you drop. 7. Do you have to fly? 8. Support renewable energy. 9. Walk, cycle or hop on a bus. 10. Finally, have fun.

ceedings, that even if we do not believe that we are the main cause of Global Warming, it is still an imperative of all Christians to look after the earth. The fact that the great majority of scientists, politicians, educationalists, religious and community leaders believe we are causing much of the problem is another matter! Patrick Harvey of the Green Party emphasised the need for public engagement and a complete change in people’s lifestyles; with local practical schemes, and councils, community groups, schools, churches and so on, working together. This is urgently required to combat the rise in these emissions before they reach the point of no return, beyond which the earth will be irreversibly damaged. There is no denying that already people, usually already the poorest in the world, are suffering from encroaching waters – in places such as Tuvalu, and Bangladesh.J

Gardening this Summer

Summer is approaching, and we hope it is going to be good! Perhaps some of us with gardens can focus on growing vegetables and fruit, so as to keep down the miles our food has to travel to reach our plates. Watering of garden produce needn’t cause extra use of water, if one can perhaps collect rain water in a tub, or re-use the water from preparing vegetables for the plants. Lots of gardeners would also suggest one does not over-water, but allow the plants’ roots to search down the water table for sustenance. Making and using compost from vegetable peelings and shredded waste paper, can enrich the soil and help the soil retain water. Happy Gardening! Kathleen Ziffo

Who will save the people?

Our new Chancellor’s promises to “protect the vulnerable” very laudable. He has, of course, many other things to do and it’s just unlucky for one bed-ridden lady who was told that she must get used to living on less and less, because welfare is not, as Caiaphas said, “expedient”. As Ebenezer Elliott almost wrote, in his, alas, unfeminist style: When wilt thou save the people? O God of mercy, when? Not crowns and pounds, but men? Flowers of thy heart, O God, are they, Let them not pass, like weeds, away, Their heritage a sunless day: God save the people! July-August 2010  3

Calendar July Sun. 4th Mon. 5th. Sun. 11th Sun 18th. Tues 20th Wed 21st Sat. 24th Sun. 25th.

11.00am Communion Service led by Rev. Frances Ruthven. 2.00pm Women’s Union at Saughtonhall. 11.00am Rev. Helen Mee. 11.00am Communion Service, led by Rev. Helen Mee. 7.30pm Elders meet. 7.00pm Interfaith Women meet. 7.00pm Our Tribe. 11.00am Baptismal service for Ellie Peden, led by Rev Fiona Bennett.

August Sun.1st Mon. 2nd Sun. 8th. Mon. 9th to Sat 14th: Sun. 15th Sun. 22nd. Sat. 28th. Sun 27th.

11.00am Communion Service. 2.00pm W.U. at Saughtonhall: Strawberry Tea in Minister’s garden. 11.00am Morning Worship. Fringe play at Saughtonhall. 11.00am Communion Service. 11.00am Morning Worship. Loud & Proud Concert. (See p. 2). 10.00 am from South Queensferry: Joint Service in St. Colm’s Abbey, Inchcolm (See p. 2). 11.00am Morning Service in Greyfriars.

September Thur. 2nd September, 1.30pm

Women’s Union Rally in Dunfermline URC, Canmore Street. All welcome.

AUC newsletter gets a name For the first time, this month our newsletter has a name: “Seeds”. The name is inspired by our dandelion logo. The seed of this most humble of plants is blown on the wind, takes root where it falls and flowers sometimes in most unlikely places. Fiona Somerville

“How like a prodigal doth nature seem, When thou, for all thy gold, so common art! Thou teachest me to deem More sacredly of every human heart, Since each reflects in joy its scanty gleam Of heaven, and could some wondrous secret show, Did we but pay the love we owe, And with a child’s undoubting wisdom look On all these living pages of God’s book.” James Russell Lowell [1819-1891]

Please note that the deadline for material for the September issue is August 24th. You can send your material to Bill Stevenson at

Seeds No 1 JulyAug 2010  
Seeds No 1 JulyAug 2010  

Augustine United Church of Edinburgh - Newsletter