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Youth Column: Expanding the Kingdom

Youth Column: Expanding the Kingdom

Thursday March 11

One of the Church's youngest ministers, the Rev Andrew Morrison, recounts his journey to faith and hope for the future

I believe with all my heart that Scotland’s greatest need is to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ.

That wasn’t always the case, as I didn’t grow up in a Christian household. In fact, both my parents had walked out of any connection with the Church in their early teens. However, God graciously brought me into a saving faith nonetheless as a teenager.

Since then, my heart has been to see people saved just as I was – to come to a true and living hope in the life transforming Good News. In March 2019, I ended up serving in the beautiful north-east coast of Scotland as minister of Arbuthnott, Bervie and Kinneff Church, aged 27. My passion is still to see the Kingdom of God advance as the Good News is preached, people come to faith, and grow as disciples of Jesus. Even with all the news of Church decline, I rejoice that there are many signs of the Kingdom expanding across Scotland and beyond.

20Schemes has a wonderful vision to ‘bring the light of the gospel to Scotland’s poorest housing schemes’, as they are proportionally frequently under-served by churches. The Church of Scotland’s similar commitment to Priority Areas is to be commended, and I pray this continues.

Furthermore, the Free Church of Scotland has a goal of planting 30 more churches by the end of this decade. Forge Scotland, Fresh Expressions and many others are continuing to release people across Scotland to build the Kingdom in new ways.

During the pandemic, the numbers signing up to the Alpha Course and Christianity Explored have boomed. Scripture Union (pre-Covid) had nearly 450 school groups and about 3500 young campers every year coming to hear about Jesus. Christian Unions reach thousands
with the Gospel each year across Scotland; the Scottish Bible Society works to give everyone access to the Word of God, and Christians Against Poverty are increasingly bringing the hope of the Gospel to many who find themselves in financial difficulty.

That’s even before we think about the astounding ways God is working across the world. Ever since those early years of following Jesus, I have had a real heart for world mission until that tremendous day when there will be a “great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the
Lamb” (Revelation 7:9).

Within a very short time frame, we could see global bible poverty being eradicated. Vision2033 is a collaboration of many bible translation groups, aiming to ensure that by 2033, everyone will have access to God’s Word and its life-changing hope. Currently, only 73% of the global population has a full Bible. Within 12 years they want this to hit 95%, with the remaining few thousand languages to have at least some of the Bible. In just over a decade, every single person on the planet will be able to hear from God in their own language. Amazing!

The Church of Scotland may be very different by the time I retire in 40(ish) years. But of this I am convinced: regardless of the decline of our own denomination, the Kingdom of God is clearly expanding across the world. People are hearing about Jesus, being saved, and growing as disciples!

Praise God!

The Rev Andrew Morrison is minister of Arbuthnott, Bervie and Kinneff Parish Church

If you are aged under 30 with a connection to the Church of Scotland, and would be interested in writing for this column, please email us on 

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