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Photo: Matthew Ross
Photo: Matthew Ross

Who We Are

Life and Work is the magazine of the Church of Scotland.

Life and Work was established in 1879 by Archibald Hamilton Charteris (1835 to 1908), who was professor of biblical criticism at Edinburgh University. The magazine was inspired by his work on the Church of Scotland's Committee of Christian Life & Work, which he initiated and led.

Hugely committed to Church causes, he later founded the Woman's Guild and the diaconate in order to harness the energies of women in the Church. He formed the diaconate from his experience of similar orders in protestant churches in Europe, where he travelled widely.

In its early years, Life and Work ran various supplements, including the Guild supplement and the Young Men's Supplement. The only one still running is the Gaelic Supplement, which was begun in 1880 and is read by Gaels all over the world. Read about the Gaelic supplement here.

In 1929 when the United Free Church of Scotland reunited with the Church of Scotland, Life and Work was subtitled The Record of the Church of Scotland in recognition of the United Free Church publication, The Record, but this reference was dropped in 1996 when the magazine was relaunched in full colour.

The magazine was voted best Member Magazine of the Year in 2004 at the PPA Scottish magazine awards and has been shortlisted many times since.

Life and Work was also awarded a prestigious Andrew Cross award in 2005 by the UK wide Churches Media Council.

The magazine’s own website was launched in the spring of 2013, as part of a digital development project approved by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Life and Work is the magazine of the Church of Scotland and is editorially independent.

Read about the current issue here


Life and Work has had 14 editors in its history:

1879: Archibald Hamilton Charteris
1880 to 1898: Rev John McMurtrie
1898 to 1902: Rev Archibald Fleming
1902 to 1925: Rev Robert Howie Fisher
1925 to 1930: Rev Harry Smith
1929 to 1934: William Pringle Livingstone
1935 to 1945: Rev George Carstairs


1945 to 1965: Rev John Wright Stevenson
1965 to 1972: Rev Leonard John Armstrong Bell
1972 to 1991: Robert Deans Kernohan
1991 to 1994: Peter B. Macdonald
1994 to 1999: Rev Dr Robin Hill
2000 to 2002: Rosemary Goring
2002 to current: Lynne McNeil