Church of Scotland
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Church brought to care home after residents had been watching live-stream

Tue 19 Mar 2019
By Cara Bentley

Residents of a care home in Scotland had church come to them after watching the live-stream week by week.

Greyfriars Parish Church in Lanark took their meeting to Beechgrove Care Home at the weekend to bring their service directly to elderly residents.

Around 90 people, including relatives of residents, attended the service, which was aimed at reconnecting people with the community.

Rev Bryan Kerr, minister at Greyfriars Parish Church, led the service and described it as a very positive experience for all and said the "smiles on resident’s faces were as wide as could be.

 

 

"We regularly go to nursing homes to lead worship during the week but to intentionally go on a Sunday morning with the whole congregation is an incredible experience," he added.

"It would be easy to organise a bus and bring residents to church but care homes often struggle with staff numbers on a Sunday to accompany them.

"But more than that, there is something Biblical about following Jesus command to 'go and make disciples'.

"It's not just about welcoming people to our church, it’s also about Greyfriars being welcoming, meeting people where they are and actively including them."

 

 

Some residents have been gathering on a Sunday morning in the care home’s cinema room to watch Greyfriars services streamed live.

Rev Kerr said: "They have spoken of how connected they feel with the church family so it was wonderful for them to meet the children they see running around the church on camera in person," he added.

The minister said it was a pleasure to see relationships between churchgoers and residents rekindled as people connected with old neighbours and those whom they sat beside or behind in church for years.

"The smiles on faces were as wide as could be when people remembered their former days worshiping regularly in our church and other churches around the area," added Mr Kerr.

"The Kirk Session in Greyfriars wants to work hard at fostering these relationships to ensure that people feel less isolated from the community they have given so much to over the years."

Mr Kerr said feedback from his congregation had been very positive and there was an appetite to meet at the care home on Carstairs Road on a regular basis.

"We feel this is definitely the start of something new and positive and it is a way in which we can work to ensure our church is truly intergenerational," he added.

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