Tuesday 6th. May, 2014 -- I am admitted to the Presbytery of Duns 

Mount Pleasant in the late afternoon sunshine, surrounded by trees and looking fabulous

I got up and walked Mix before breakfast. Tom arrived and we set out for Abbey St. Bathan’s to visit the saw mill there. Our purpose was to ascertain if we could buy seven metre lengths of six inch by 2 inch timber. We couldn’t, but it was a pleasant trip and I enjoyed listening to the owner reminiscing about the past.

Back home I contacted a firm in Berwick who can supply timber but only to six metres in length. I typed seven metre lengths into Google who came up with a firm which proudly announced that it kept longer lengths of timber and had both a national and regional branches, so I contacted them for a quotation. The reply came back saying that they didn’t deliver to Scotland – no wonder so many people want to be independent!

The reason for searching for large timber is because we wish to re-roof this barn so that we can store all of the boxes and furniture which is at present in the Hen House and is preventing us from getting on with the work on that building

I totally tidied up the summer house this afternoon after lunch – partly because it desperately needed it but also because Durham were playing Yorkshire at cricket. I should have been down at Chester-le-Street but watching it on Sky, first through my computer and then on the television, was a very good second best. Durham are fighting to save the game but are so far making a very good fist of it. Tomorrow will see the denouement.

In the evening I went to the Presbytery of Duns to be admitted as a member, having presented my presbytery certificate to the presbytery clerk. There was a very nice little ceremony which I found quite moving as I signed the formula and the Moderator led the Presbytery in prayer. I enjoyed the presbytery meeting – it was small (a few less than thirty-five people, I would guess) and extremely friendly. Some of its business was quite challenging – a report on how the Church was matching up to the requirement of serving people with learning disabilities, another on the work of the presbytery in organising a Berwickshire-wide food bank and the use which is being made of it, a challenge also to consider if there was a role for the Church in working with children on Friday afternoons now that schools in the area are to operate a four-and-a-half-day week. I suppose the opportunity is there for the Church because many parents will be working on Friday afternoons and this provides an opportunity for the Churches to ‘fill the gap’ and provide something good for children which also helps their parents. With closing libraries and other public buildings, presbytery was invited to consider setting up internet cafes (with Government funding support) because of the difficulties faced of accessing the internet by some folk in rural areas. I remembered that this is what we had done in Luss back in 2004 and that the Government had funded satellite broad-band for us because there was no other way of bringing the internet to the village.

I enjoyed the meeting.

After the Presbytery meeting I drove home with a sausage supper and watched the second episode of Happy Valley before walking Mix and retiring to bed.


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