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Parish News Round-up

Thursday February 25 2021

Our regular round-up of news received from churches

Send items of parish news to magazine@lifeandwork.org or Life and Work, 121 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 4YN. All submissions will also be considered for the magazine, but we are unable to print everything we receive.
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***Please note: people shown in photos should be complying with the guidance on distancing and the wearing of face masks in churches, that was in effect at the time the picture was taken***

A former refugee and lifelong charity volunteer, whose life story was turned into an animated film by Christian Aid, passed away in February at the age of 95.

Born in Serbia, as a child Theo Davidovic was sold into domestic servitude after the death of his mother. As a teenager he joined the resistance to the Nazis, but following the Communist takeover of Yugoslavia he was forced to flee the country and spent two years in refugee camps in Italy and Germany, where he received lifesaving help from Christian Aid.

Theo arrived in Kinglassie In Fife, in 1947, where he met and married Betty Douglas and worked first as a miner and then ran a shoe repair shop in Edinburgh. He joined his local church in 1950 and became an Elder in 1965.

Theo never forgot the food parcels he received from Christian Aid whilst a refugee, so when the church was looking for a collector he readily volunteered. With his collecting can he became a familiar sight on the streets of Kinglassie during Christian Aid week, but he did much more. A keen gardener with a large garden, he organised plant sales and held an annual barbecue in his back garden with proceeds to Christian Aid.

In 2017 Christian Aid marked the 60th anniversary of Christian Aid Week by turning Theo’s life story into an animated film which was nominated for a Charity Film Award.

His minister at Auchterderran Kinglassie Parish Church, the Rev Donald Lawrie, said: “Theo was an example to us all. He will be sadly missed by his family, his Church family and his community.”

A fundraising project by children and families at a Dumfries church has raised more than £10,000 in just two months.

Kids4Togo is raising money for a Compassion UK campaign to help families in Togo, one of the poorest countries in the world, provide for themselves.

Spokesman for the group, Tony Read said: “Kids4Togo is a fundraising initiative created by children and their families from St George’s Church in Dumfries, who want to help the fight against hunger in Togo. We aim to raise £11,000 for Compassion UK’s ”Planting a Way Through the Storm” Project, which will provide enough seeds and fertiliser to feed 1016 families in Togo for 7 months. We have already raised over £10,000 towards our total through donations and sponsorship, but are not ready to stop there.”

To raise funds the Kids4Togo group of 10 children (aged between 1 and 10) and their families, supported by members of St George’s and their friends have been taking on a number of challenges:

  • The first was a Virtual Trek across Togo, in which the children walked, ran and cycled a collective 360 miles in four weeks.
  • The second was a Taste4Togo challenge requiring them to taste 3 foods whilst blindfolded, donate £3 and nominate three friends to complete the challenge.
  • The third challenge is the one which involves helping the kids on their ‘Virtual Trek Home’ from Togo. The local community is invited to help by joining the kids walking, running or cycling a collective of 3217 miles back home to Dumfries. Already this is paying off with ‘trekkers’ registering  to donate and submitting the distances they are walking to add to the total miles.

By donating £5 as a registration fee to their JustGiving page https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/kids4togo, you can join the kids on their marathon journey back home to Dumfries. All you need to do is count up your weekly miles every Sunday and submit the total (along with any photos/videos) to kids4togo@outlook.com 


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