Letter from the Rector

Dear friends,
Recently I have enjoyed many spectacular skies as I have walked home at sunset. A number of them have been captured and shared on line by local photographers like Raymond Dormer who took this image from his bedroom window.

What I didn’t know until a friend explained it to me, was that these beautiful sights were due to the massive volcanic eruption in the South Pacific on 15th January. They were created when the sun’s rays reflected off the particles of ash thrown up by the Hunga Tonga volcano which has caused thousands of families to be without clean water, food, and shelter. What had brought me pleasure here in Dunblane had caused suffering to many on the other side of our world.

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us more than ever how interconnected we are globally. It is becoming clear that the vaccination gap between richer and poorer nations is not only causing devastation the other side of the world but has contributed to the emergence of new variants which are affecting all of us. This interconnection is at the very heart of the message of this year’s Fairtrade Fortnight which starts at the end of this month. Ensuring economic justice for the poor farmers on the other side of the world who produce food we enjoy is crucial in the global fight against climate change. At the UN COP26 summit last year, the richer nations failed to recognise the urgent need to invest in these small farmers, delaying until next year the funding they had promised to the countries most vulnerable to climate disaster. During Fairtrade Fortnight we can help make sure that politicians turn their promises into action at COP27. There will also be opportunities to spread the message that we here in Dunblane have the power to make a difference to the lives of thousands of people simply by the choices we make when we shop.

Our responsibility as people of faith is made very clear in our Gospel for this year, the Gospel of Luke, which has a particular emphasis on Jesus’ compassion towards the poor and oppressed. It is difficult to read its pages without hearing the call of God’s Spirit to respond through prayer and action to their need for justice. I hope that you will join me in taking time to at least think about these things as we approach Lent and Easter.
With love to you all,