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Home  >  Features  >  Youth Column: A Pleasure to Serve

Features

Youth Column: A Pleasure to Serve

Monday June 7

Catriona Munro reflects on the place of young people and her work with the Church of Scotland


“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” 1 Peter 4:10

My service in the Church of Scotland has seen me take advantage of a great number of opportunities as a young person, and as I gradually creep out of the Under 30s bracket I’m surprised myself at the turns my service has taken me.

Representing my presbytery at the General Assembly was my first real introduction to the possibilities that lay ahead. A short time after my first year as a National Youth Assembly rep I was ordained as an elder, a role which I have served in two congregations. I served as Clerk to the National Youth Assembly for a year which fitted comfortably around my roles in the Faith Nurture Forum. I will continue to serve in any place and any way that God leads me.

God has now led me to a new role – Mission Outreach Officer working with the Congregational Engagement team as part of the Faith Impact Forum. I am here to support and serve you, our congregations. Working in the Congregational Engagement team has opened my eyes to a wealth of opportunities across not just Scotland but the world.

Perhaps not the easiest situation to find yourself in, starting a new job while in lockdown during a global pandemic, however these are the times we find ourselves in and so must adapt.

While the commute, the early starts and late nights home aren’t things I miss, it is a lot harder to replicate the feel of a team over a screen. Notwithstanding we have been doing our best with the technology we are so fortunate to have. Four months into this new role and I’ve travelled all over the world without leaving the dining room and met with many people from all walks of life and service.

My role is seeing me connecting with presbyteries all over the country and the relationships I’m building are crucial to our work. Working with our partners at Christian Aid, we are keen to involve more young people in our discussions and action.

Reflecting upon my calling to serve within the Church of Scotland, I have come to realise that there is so much more to ministry than a parish charge.

Climate justice, working to end violence against women, equality, diversity and inclusion, building and maintaining global partnerships and political awareness and engagement are all on our agenda and we want to encourage our congregations to engage with us. These are all areas which are of huge importance – not just as a Church but as individuals, as communities, as people of God.

As a young person in the church I am all too aware of the difficulties facing the Under 40s demographic. Sunday mornings are not easy to commit to when you’re studying, working shifts or have a young family to contend with. Committee meetings that we could impact are less accessible when work patterns have to dictate our availability, and yet our voices are keen to be heard. As we continue working in new ways let us then consider new ways of engaging, new ways of reaching out, new ways of serving with our young people.

We have a wealth of options before us and are no longer limited to attending one service in one place each week. Trying new worship experiences and discovering alternative ways of connecting with God – and each other – is only going to strengthen our faith.

Whether from a desk in the Central Offices or from a makeshift desk in the dining room, it remains ever, a pleasure to serve.


Catriona Munro is Mission Outreach Officer with the Faith Impact Forum of the Church of Scotland

If you are under 30 and connected with the Church of Scotland, and would like to contribute to the Life and Work youth page, please contact us on magazine@lifeandwork.org