8th January 2016

Guild E-Newsletter January 2016

 

New Year, Same Bold Guild!

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Happy New Year to all our Guild members and friends of the Guild! I hope you have had a peaceful time over Christmas and enjoyed some rest.

 

Sadly, for many people hit by the terrible floods, Christmas will have been anything but peaceful. We probably can't imagine how it feels to lose most furniture and other things which can be replaced, but also cherished possessions which can't. We pray that all those affected can soon turn their houses back into homes.

 

I'm sure many of us are looking forward to our Guilds restarting after our break. The Leadership Team is looking forward to more Action Plan Roadshows an opportunity to explore the Plan and the exciting developments already happening. If you can't wait to find out more, why not ask your National Executive representative about it? They would be delighted to chat to you about anything regarding the Action Plan and the Guild’s bold, strong direction for the future!

 

This year we are also very much looking forward to working with the National Youth Assembly. They are a great group of young people, very committed to our churches and keen to work with the Guild some are already Guild members.

 

It's hard to believe I have been in the post for half my term! There is always so much to learn, but we are extremely lucky with our entire office staff. They are so knowledgeable and helpful to all of us on the leadership team. We value them greatly.

 

I hope you all enjoy the forthcoming session and I look forward to meeting many of you (which is my favourite part!). Before you read the rest of this e-news, I would like to share a prayer I found a long time ago. It’s something I try hard to live by and it’s called ‘The Servant’.

 

Whatever privilege, title or prestige others may give me,

I am your servant Lord.

When I look at another,

may I do so with eyes of compassion and generosity not of desire and deception.

When I speak to another,

may I do so with a voice of wisdom and trust not of manipulation and arrogance.

When I am given a chance,

may I do so with an open heart and outstretched hand not grudgingly.

When you seek to dwell in my heart Lord,

may I empty myself so I can be filled with you Lord.

I am your servant Lord.

 

Every blessing,

Linda Young

Guild National Convener

 

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Updates and news

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* Theme & Discussion Topic Guide

The latest Theme Guide will be hitting doormats within the next couple of weeks for 2016-2017's theme 'Go in Joy!'. The Leadership Team and Committees are especially excited because, for the first time ever, the Theme Guide and Discussion Topic Guide have been brought together in one handy resource. Resource Days will begin to be held across the country to explore how to use this new resource in addition to all the other resources available to those planning their Guild's session. To find out more about this, please contact the Guild office by email <mailto:guild@churchofscotland.org.uk> or by calling 0131 240 2217.

* Christmas Card competition

Yes, just when you thought you were finished for Christmas for a while... here is an opportunity to revisit it! For the Guild's Christmas card this year, we're calling for contributions from anyone and everyone. The theme for 2016-2017 is 'Go in Joy!' so the card should try to tie in with that. Other than that, the idea is up to you! Submissions for this competition are due by 1 June 2016. Click here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-z/> to see full details.

 

News in brief

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The Resource Co-ordinators Conference is coming up on Saturday 6 February in Stirling. Resource Co-ordinators will be written to to confirm all details very soon. If you would be interested in becoming a Resource Co-ordinator, please get in touch with the Guild Office!

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The Guild has often been known for spearheading new initiatives and bringing them to the attention of the wider church. In that spirit, the Guild is announcing its debut on another social media platform - Instagram! Other than the National Youth Assembly, no other group (or even the Church itself) is on Instagram, so this is exciting. What is Instagram? Find out here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-v/> . Find the Guild's Instagram page here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-e/> !

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In November, the Guild office dispatched the usual Treasurer's Mailing, but unfortunately the Church's mailing room missed a box when franking envelopes. This has resulted in some Treasurers having to pay to retrieve their copy of the forms, or simply not receiving them at all. If you haven't received your mailing yet, or would like to be reimbursed, please get in touch with the Guild office.

 

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News from you - Christmas special

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As part of Cults Parish Church's Christmas tree festival this year, the Guild sponsored one of 30 trees and covered it with doves which were made and decorated by members. The tree was called "Peace to You" and visitors to the festival were encouraged to decorate a dove and take it home for their own tree. Guild members also made and decorated larger doves inscribed with the phrase "Go in Peace" which were distributed to members of the congregation at the end of the Guild led Service in November.

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Dumbarton Presbytery has recently been involved with Glasgow the Caring City. Rev Neil Galbraith (International Projects Manager) launched a major appeal called 'Give It Some Wellie' with refugee children in mind, where people were asked to contribute a pair of wellies filled with goodies. Each of the Dunbartonshire Guilds got involved and at the Carol Service, 400 pairs of boots with gloves, socks, toiletries and sweets were collected! Well done to everyone involved!

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South Ronaldsay and Burray used their church sanctuary differently this Christmas - to have a delicious 3 course candlelit dinner together! Guild members say it was a fab evening with great food made by the members and special 'home grown' entertainment including a quiz won by Rhoda and Krissy, poetry by Marjory and music from Eileen. It was the first time the group decided not to go to a restaurant and it was voted a great success! We all hope you enjoy many more evenings like this.

 

Meet the Committees

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Every month, we say hello to a different Convener or member of the National Executive in a bid to get to know the Guild members representing us. This month, say hello to Marian!

 

Name:

Marian Macintyre

Committee:

Convener of Projects & Topics Committee

Guild:

Sandwick Guild in Shetland

How long have you been a Guild member?

I have been a member of the Guild in Ayrshire, Paisley and Shetland since 1976 when I joined the Young Woman's Group (YWG).

Can you think of something you would say was your 'favourite ever Guild moment'?

I think it was when I was welcomed to the Guild along with other members of the YWG in Stevenston High Kirk in the 1970's... we were all still in the YWG, but in the Guild as well. The generation gap was well and truly bridged!

What do you like about being on the Committee you're on?

Being on the Projects & Topics Committee has provided the amazing opportunity to be involved in the selection of new projects, and in the ongoing support of these projects. As for the 'topic' side of this committee, as a linguist I love WORDS, and so having a part in the writing of new discussion topic materials is right up my street! As Guilds, we need to talk!!

Is there any Guild event / happening you're particularly looking forward to in 2016?

I am looking forward to taking part in my first ever Roadshow in Edinburgh in March, and hopefully bringing the Roadshow to the North Isles later in the year.

If you could sum up the Guild in three words, what would you say?

Engaging. Enlivening. Enjoyable.

 

Projects

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Prospects <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-g/> have helpfully come up with a different 'Idea for the Month' as part of their partnership with the Guild. This month's idea would be super for anyone with a gap in their current syllabus. Find out more about it here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-w/> . (P.S. If you missed Prospect's Christmas message, you can see it here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-yd/> !)

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There is a brilliant article in January's Life & Work magazine all about the Guild's project with Feed the Minds <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-yh/> . Specifically focussing on Christine, whom some may remember when she visited Edinburgh last year, the article tells the story of one girl bravely refusing 'the cut' and, in turn, inspiring other girls to speak out. Find out more about Life & Work magazine here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-yk/> . You can also follow Christine on Twitter here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-yu/> !

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As part of the Guild Advent Calendar, Mission International <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jr/> released a video thanking Guild members for their support over 2015 and updating everyone on their progress. If you haven't yet had a chance to watch this video, you can view it here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jy/> . Don't forget to have a look at all the other Advent Calendar <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jj/> doors too - there may be some little snippets from Projects you have missed!

 

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Focus on... Anti-Human Trafficking

 

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This month's 'Focus on' spot has been written by Hazel Watson, Convener of the Scottish Churches Anti-Human Trafficking Group. Many readers will remember the Guild brought this issue to the wider attention of the Church at the 2007 General Assembly. The original report can be read here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jt/> and Resource Pack can be found here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-ji/> . Hazel would be interested in hearing from any Guild members involved in the original anti-trafficking work and can be contacted on the details at the bottom of this section.

 

People are too Precious to be Bought and Sold

What have we been doing about Human Trafficking?

 

More than ten years since the Guild began campaigning against one of the most appalling crimes, we now have legislation in Scotland that is specifically designed to combat human trafficking.

The Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Act received Royal Assent in November 2015. This new law considerably strengthens previous legislation and increase penalties for perpetrators to a maximum of life imprisonment. There will also be increased provision of support services for victims so that those who survive their ordeal can have the opportunity to recover and regain a sense of self-worth. It should send a strong message to those who cruelly demean others by treating them as mere commodities for profit and their own selfish purposes.

The Guild has been active in the fight against human trafficking for many years now, reporting on the issue at the General Assemblies of 2007 and 2011. It was instrumental in getting the Scottish Churches Anti-Human Trafficking Group, an ecumenical Programme Group of ACTS, set up and has been represented on this group since its inception in 2011. The Anti-Human Trafficking Group has since been active in raising awareness about the issue among church members and those in wider Scottish society. It has begun working with partner churches internationally to find solutions to the problem. Over recent years it has contributed to political debate encouraging church members to become engaged by writing to MSPs.

 

The legislation requires the Scottish Government to develop a strategy for the implementation of the new law. As a result of our political involvement during the passage of the legislation through Parliament we have been invited to become a member of the group which will oversee the development of the Strategy. We hope that this will enable us to continue to contribute to our aim of eradicating this evil crime.

Our mandate is based on our understanding that God loves all men, women and children equally and wants to see us living a full and abundant life with dignity and liberty. Jesus teaches us to love our neighbour and, through the parable of the Good Samaritan, to help the stranger who is in need of compassion and care. In Proverbs 31 we are challenged ‘… defend those who are helpless and have no hope’ and, in Luke 4, we are told that Jesus was here, among us, ‘to set the oppressed free.’ These principles all apply to those hurt through the illegal practice of human trafficking in which families are broken by the cruel acts of those who perpetrate this evil crime today, as in biblical times.

If you would like further information or would like to arrange a speaker about human trafficking, please contact either Miriam Weibye, Programme Officer, Tel: 01259 216980, email miriamweibye@acts-scotland.org, or Hazel Watson, Convener, Tel: 0777 618 4471, email hazelwatson33@gmail.com

 

References:

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (2014) Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2014. United Nations, Vienna. (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.14.V.10)

 

Dates for your diary

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* National Youth Assembly Burns Night

​On Saturday 6 February, the NYA will be holding a Burns Night for anyone who has a link with the NYA past, present or future. This could be a great opportunity for any Guild members keen to strengthen their link with those who represent the young people in the Church. There will be traditional music, entertainment and food along with the fellowship that can always be found at any NYA event! An evening ticket costs £3.50 or £15 to include a bed at the venue for the night. Click here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jd/> to find out more and to book tickets.

 

* Heart & Soul 2016 will be taking place on Sunday 22 May in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh. Expect big, bold, exciting things from the Guild stall this year!

 

* Save the date for this year's Annual Gathering coming up on Saturday 3 September and be prepared to 'Go in Joy!' like never before!

 

Just for fun!

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Congratulations to December's competition winner, Lesley Steel, who correctly told us that a whopping £6,014,158 has been raised for good causes by the Guild over the last 46 years! Wow!

 

The next competition has a BIG prize to celebrate the fact we've reached over 1000 likes on Facebook <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jh/> ! This month you could win a Guild shoulder bag, notebook, Annual Gathering 2015 DVD, pen, pencil, trolley coin, button badge and a pack of greeting cards!

 

All you have to do to win is answer this question:

 

On the 11 November 2015, the Guild posted a picture on Facebook of two Guild members wearing a certain item that could be bought in the Guild shop. What was that item?

(Hint: click here <http://theguild.cmail20.com/t/t-l-iujyddy-dujtnsj-jk/> to visit the Guild's Facebook page and scroll back through posts)

 

Answers should be sent by email by 12 noon on 31st January. A winning answer will be chosen at random from correct entries and the winner announced in the next e-newsletter.

 

That's everything for the first edition of Guild e-news in 2016! If you have something to contribute for the next e-newsletter then please email guild@churchofscotland.org.uk - we can't wait to hear from you!

 

We'll leave you with this thought - let's go forward in our Guilds and be world-changers!

 

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