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Monday May 11 2015
We will be providing daily updates from the Assembly hall, as well as giving you a flavour of some of the fringe events. Feel free to get involved in the debates by contacting us through Facebook, Twitter or email. A webcast of the proceedings, along with full reports and key speeches, will be available through the General Assembly area of the Church of Scotland website.
Here are our summaries of the reports to the Assembly.
If you're a General Assembly newbie, you may want to check out our Beginner's Guide.
The traditional 'clapping out' of the Moderator and the Lord High Commissioner at the close of the General Assembly.
In his closing speech, the Moderator, the Rt Rev Angus Morrison, told the Assembly that it had been an ‘extraordinary and unforgettable week’, one which he thought he had lost the chance of when he had to withdraw due to illness last year. “But with God’s good providence here we are, and I wish again to thank the Assembly for so graciously enabling me to be here this week.”
He restated his wish for the Church to stay united during its current difficulties: “We are one family and we all know the best of families have disagreements and arguments. But the strength of family is we talk these things through, we stick with one another.
“The notion that deep disagreements are best dealt with by separating ourselves off from those we disagree with is deeply flawed. I sincerely hope and pray that, whatever the pain being felt on all sides, we will all hang in there together, we will continue to pray for and listen to one another, and wait for God to lead us forward in His way.”
And he told the Commissioners to leave the Assembly in a spirit of hope: “We are not complacent but neither should we be cowed or despondent in any way.”
The Lord High Commissioner, Baron Hope of Craighead, told the Assembly of his visits around Scotland during the week, saying that he had talked in his opening speech of ‘the goodness we see and feel around us in our country… and, by goodness, we have seen and felt so much of it in the last few days’.
The Moderator, the Rev Dr Angus Morrison, with the heads of chaplaincy for the three armed forces and Major General James Cowan (2nd from right), who spoke to the General Assembly this morning, and the military chaplains of the Church of Scotland. Pictured in the Signet Library following the presentation of the Report of the Committee of Chaplains to HM Forces.
Douglas Galbraith, who this week steps down as Precentor of the General Assembly after many years, at the organ this morning.
One of the sign language interpreters working at this year's General Assembly. Picture by Derek Fett.
See the winning entries for the Moderator's Medal here.
Around 5000 people gathered in Edinburgh's Princes Street Gardens for Heart and Soul, the celebration of the life of the Church of Scotland. See a picture gallery here.