Global RP Church

Representing Scotland in Canada

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Last month, Stephen represented the RP Church of Scotland over two day-long meetings of the RP Global Alliance Advisory Committee.

The RP Global Alliance was established in 2015 and has representatives from the RP Churches in Scotland, Ireland, the United States and Canada. RP works in Japan and Asia are represented through the RPCNA.

L-R: Bill Matthess (Ireland), Andrew Stewart (Australia), Matt Filbert (US - via Skype), Andrew Quigley & Matt Kingswood (Canada)

L-R: Bill Matthess (Ireland), Andrew Stewart (Australia), Matt Filbert (US - via Skype), Andrew Quigley & Matt Kingswood (Canada)

Here’s an introduction to the work of the Global Alliance, taken from its constitution:

It has become clear that in recent years the Reformed Presbyterian denominations worldwide have seen new Churches established in regions where hitherto no Reformed Presbyterian Churches had existed. In addition there are further opportunities for expansion in Asia and South America. These developments are to be welcomed, encouraged, and supported where possible.

We are of the view that the time is now opportune to build on the existing relationships which have been nurtured and developed over the past 200 years.  These relationships have placed us in the very privileged position of being able to share in fellowship and mutual help at an international level, even though we are, for the most part, small national Churches.

As part of their work, the Global Alliance oversee a website and Facebook page, which are regularly updated with news from the RP Churches around the world.

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On the Lord’s Day evening prior to the meetings, Stephen preached in Russell RP Church. The minister there is Matt Kingswood, who spoke at the RP International Conference in Ireland during the summer.

American visitors

We recently had the opportunity to hear about the work of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America. Jason and Michelle, who were over visiting from Indianapolis with their two children, gave us a bit of a flavour of church life Stateside at our Wednesday morning Bible study.

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Stephen and Jason had previously met on a mission team in Newry, and Carla and Michelle had previously met on a mission team in Airdrie. Because of their vision for the Global RP Church, they said that they had decided to spend their European holiday in Airdrie and Stranraer rather than Barcelona and London.

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After sharing some traditional Scottish food, Stephen and Carla took them to Wigtown to show them some Covenanter sites.  We are grateful for another opportunity to spend time with brothers and sisters in Christ from around the world!

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From Australia to Stranraer!

Over the last few years in Stranraer we have had a few developing connections to Australia. One of our ladies lived there for most of her life before moving back to Scotland. A few months ago a family from the RP Church came here as part of their holiday so they could worship with us. And last Wednesday, Graeme Hart, one of the ministers from the RP Church of Australia (currently in the UK on a pulpit exchange) came to give us an update on what's happening with the churches there.

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It was a very encouraging meeting, especially seeing the connections between McKinnon RPC (where Graeme ministers) and Stranraer. Like Stranraer, McKinnon is an older congregation being revitalised by the Presbytery. Graeme has been there for seven years, so it was interesting to here what sort of things they'd done, and the challenges and encouragements they'd seen. It also gave us a vision of where by God's grace we could be in another five years or so.

One of the things that Graeme said had been important to developing relationships in McKinnon was eating together, and afterwards some of us went out to Brambles Tearoom for lunch!

One of the things that Graeme said had been important to developing relationships in McKinnon was eating together, and afterwards some of us went out to Brambles Tearoom for lunch!

We had a great time together and we are now better equipped to pray for our brothers and sisters in Australia!

Reading Lamentations

Lamentations is probably one of the least-known books of the Bible - but we're hoping to become more familiar with it over the next 4 weeks as we read it together using the notes from Let's Worship God, and then get together on Thursday evenings at 6:30pm to discuss it.

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The notes were written by Kyle Borg, minister of Winchester RP Church in Kansas. He's pictured above with Stephen at the RP International Conference in the summer. To read more of Kyle's writing, check out his contributions to the Gentle Reformation blog. His sermons are available to listen to on Reformed Voice, along with a helpful seminar he gave at the Conference on rural and small town ministry: