Try a six month print or digital Life and Work subscription


Sign up to our monthly newsletter

Please confirm that you are happy to hear from The Church of Scotland:

You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, please visit the Privacy Policy on our website.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.

Home  >  Features  >  General Assembly 2016


Pictures by Derek Fett unless stated
Pictures by Derek Fett unless stated

General Assembly 2016

Monday May 16 2016

Welcome to Life and Work's coverage of the 2016 General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, which opens on Saturday May 21.

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.

Read our interview with the Moderator-Designate, the Rev Dr Russell Barr.

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.

Business timetable

Fringe timetable

And finally, here's what happened last year.

Friday May 27

During the usual warm and emotional final session, the Moderator told the General Assembly that 'energy and vitality... like the rushing wind of Pentecost' had rushed through the hall this week. He said it had been 'exciting, energising, exhausting (and) uplifting'.

Dr Barr added: "What is there not to enjoy about being in the company of sisters and brothers in Christ? What is there not to enjoy about being in the company of sisters and brothers in Christ who come to this place in this assembly from all over the world? We are the people of the way. We are the people of God's way and if the story of the Emmaus Road is about a journey it sets before us the truth that, as we go our separate ways, there is always one who is walking with us and who will be waiting to meet us at our journey's end."

Church warned to expect 'significant' reductions in church buildings

Thursday May 26

Armed Forces Covenant to be drawn up - Attempt to delay same-sex marriage report defeated - call for inclusion of youth in worship and decision-making.


Wednesday May 25

Historic address by Archbishop of Canterbury - Columba Declaration unanimously endorsed - 'hub-style' ministries approved


Tuesday May 24

Church backs ban on corporal punishment of children - strong words on fuel poverty - support for remaining in EU - "An exciting time to be a member of the Guild"

Monday May 23

Call to respond to climate change - CrossReach instructed to pay living wage - Forum to examine whether elders can take the sacraments

Saturday May 21

Church agrees to allow ministers in same-sex marriage.

Images from the opening ceremony. Pictures by Derek Fett.