Welcome to St Mungo's

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Mission Statement

Seeking to be
open and
welcoming
to all actively
growing in faith

Our Minister

Ever since our minister, Rev Sang Yoon Cha, came to us in 2011 we have been on a wonderful adventure together.   During this time we have faced many challenges and changes. We have had major building work done, adaptations to the inside of our building and the introduction of some different types of services. We have lost old friends and gained new.   We are currently facing what is possibly our biggest challenge since he arrived – Covid 19 – but with Sang’s help support and guidance we will see this through and be stronger together.

Sang’s message for week beginning 9 August 2020 is now available on the About Us page.  Just click on the Message from our Minister box.

Sunday Service

Our Church service starts at 11.15 every Sunday and we would be delighted if you could join us then.

When you arrive at the church for the Sunday service you will notice some differences.  We hope that the following information will help to prepare you for what to expect.

If you intend to come to church you should assess the risk and make your decision based on that.

If you do decide to attend the service it is important to maintain social distance and wear a face covering.  You may have to queue outside the church if a few people arrive at the same time.  A maximum of 50 people will be allowed into the building.  Once inside the building you will be asked to provide contact details – full name and contact telephone number – in line with track and trace guidelines.  You may wish to bring these with you on a piece of paper so that everyone can get into the building more quickly.

On arrival you will be asked to use the hand sanitiser provided – or you can bring your own.  As there will be no singing, you will not be issued with a hymn book.   Your collection should be placed in the plate at the back of the church as you come in.  You may wish instead to set up a standing order so that you do not need to carry cash.  The elders on duty can give you the necessary details.

Once inside you will find arrows on the floor to show you which direction to go in.  Pews have been marked off so that social distancing can be maintained.  Please follow these directions.

If you or a member of your household show symptoms of Covid 19 please self isolate and book a test.  If you develop symptoms after attending church again self isolate and book a test.   Please also notify the Session Clerk – Marie Campbell.

It is not the church service we are used to but it is important that we all follow the guidelines to protect one another so please follow the guidelines and stay safe.

We have produced a special edition of the Weekly Parishioner where you can get more detailed information and look at more pictures of the inside of the church and examples of the type of signs you may see.  You can look at this by clicking on the Weekly Parishioner tab and choosing Church reopening.

Get Involved

In normal times, there are lots of ways you can get involved in the church, it’s not all about the Sunday service.  You could join the Guild – it is open to all.  You could volunteer to help with the after church coffees, Wednesday coffees or the Café.  Volunteers to help with the café will be welcomed when the Church reopens and the Cafe is finally able to open, You could attend the events organised by the Church throughout the year.

However, at this time, all of these things are on hold but you can keep in touch with members who are isolated – a phone call or text shows them that they are not forgotten.

Every Sunday, there is an order of service on the Church’s Facebook page and on the What’s On page on this website so that even if you are not able to attend church you know what the service includes. There are links to hymns on YouTube so that you can join in singing or just listen.  At the moment Sang is sharing his sermon live on the Facebook page.

Although the Church is now open for the Sunday service, the other work of the church is still continuing and there are still expenses to be covered so please help if you can. You can either fill your envelope each week ready for when you are able to join us for the Church service again or if you would like to set up a Standing Order or give a donation please get in touch using the email address connect@alloastmungos.org and we will be happy to give you more information.

Ways to Support the Church Financially

Apart from the routine way of donating money, if you were to
use “Easyfundraising” then the church benefits without it
costing you any more.

News from 121 – week beginning 9 August

In the most recent edition of “It’s a Fair Question”, Dez Johnston, head of Alpha Scotland spoke about his faith journey with Rt Rev Dr Martin Fair. He spoke openly about his unusual journey to faith, which began when he was working as a bouncer and caught up in alcohol and drug addiction.

To read more about this and hear the conversation go to

https://churchofscotland.org.uk/news-and-events/news/2020/alpha-scotland-director-shares-his-journey-from-fallen-to-faithful

Once again this week the Church of Scotland joined with other Christian denominations and organisations across Scotland and asked people to join in prayer at 7pm on Sunday. More information, including a copy of the letter and the prayer can be found by following this link.

https://churchofscotland.org.uk/news-and-events/news/2020/scottish-christians-join-together-in-prayer-this-sunday

The latest Guild newsletter – week beginning 26 July – can be found here:

https://mailchi.mp/churchofscotland/guild-news-12603316?e=b6ff4e6724

The Church nationally has a group who meet regularly to develop guidelines for Churches which will help them to to reopen all aspects of Church life safely when conditions permit. Let us hope and pray that we will continue to be able to meet in person in St Mungo’s for many years to come.

The Church is now open for the Sunday service and the other work of the church is still continuing so there are still expenses to be covered.  The Church of Scotland has introduced an online donations system which allows those who wish to continue to support this work financially even when unable to attend in person. To find out more about this and the importance of your donations, please follow the link below.
https://churchofscotland.org.uk/news-and-events/news/2020/support-your-local-church-with-our-new-online-donations-system

UN International Youth Day – August 12

In 1999 the United Nations General Assembly designated 12 August each year as International Youth Day.  The theme of International Youth Day 2020, “Youth Engagement for Global Action” seeks to highlight how involving young people – in the 15-24 age group – at local, national and global levels is enriching what is happening in many aspects of life as well as learning lessons about how to encourage more young people to get involved.  More information about the project can be found here.

https://www.un.org/development/desa/youth/

More locally, Guild members have seen how young people are involved in society through one of the Guild projects which supports the Boys Brigade “Growing in Faith” project.  This project has helped highlight the work done by the BB movement to help young people to grow in faith and in confidence.  Over the summer the organisation has introduced #BBatHome providing resources online for different age groups which have helped to keep young people – and their families – engaged and interested.

https://boys-brigade.org.uk/bbathome/

The Guild also heard from Dana McQuater who was Moderator of the Church of Scotland Youth Assembly about the work they do.  It was inspiring to hear her enthusiasm about the Church and her involvement in wider church projects.  While the format of the Youth Assembly has changed, the willingness to involve young adults in the work of the Church is still there.

Connect Alloa – a local youth club – meets in St Mungo’s twice a week and has done a lot to involve young people in decision making as well as providing a safe environment to enjoy time with other young people.  At present they meet online, as they have done throughout the current Covid situation, so that the young people can continue to have contact with one another.

https://connectalloa.org.uk/

Young Adult Carers go the extra mile without making a fuss, while trying to juggle education, employment or training with caring responsibilities and making decisions about what they want to do with their life and how to fit their caring role into all of this.  Often this is done while becoming increasingly isolated from their peers as they are not free to go out socialising to the same extent.  Help is available locally from the Carers Centre at

http://centralcarers.org/

Overall there are approximately 1.2 billion people aged 15-24 across the world.  We often hear negative stories about that age group but the majority want to make life better for others and many just quietly get on with things.  Those involved in youth groups want to use their time constructively, members of the Scottish Youth Parliament debate issues of importance to young people and society but we rarely hear about the positive impact of young people.  Everyone should be valued for what they do and even little things like putting litter in a bin can make a difference.

 

Mental Well-Being

As noted in a previous Digest article, there is concern about the long term effects on mental health – particularly, but not exclusively, among our young people – of the Covid19 pandemic.  Many people are suffering more anxiety and feelings of insecurity at this time but there are resources available which can help.

Dr Elaine Lockhart, Chair of the Royal College of Psychiatrist’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), said in a recent statement:

“It is perfectly normal to feel worried during exceptional and frightening times such as this. However, if you are starting to feel overwhelmed, it’s important to acknowledge your feelings and speak to someone you trust, whether that’s a friend, a family member, your GP or a helpline”.

The Scottish Association for Mental Health has a wide range of information and resources – some specifically produced with regard to coronavirus.  Find out more at the link below.

https://www.samh.org.uk/about-mental-health/self-help-and-wellbeing/coronavirus-information-hub

Young Scot is currently running the Aye Feel campaign about mental health in young people which includes a lot of information on a wide variety of topics with videos as well as ideas of things to do.  More information is available by following this link:

https://young.scot/campaigns/national/aye-feel

If you feel stressed or worried, you may well find something helpful at Crossreach.  Find out more about Crossreach and the help they offer by checking their website at

https://www.crossreach.org.uk/

Weekly Digest Article

As the Alloa Advertiser is now publishing the District Digest again the St Mungo’s item can be found there.

The Importance of Older People

Within our parish, the National Records of Scotland data shows that 13% of our population is over 65.  Older people are often portrayed as a drain on society but, when you look at what is happening in a community, many of the people giving up their time for others are over 65 because they do not have the same work commitments.  A figure published recently said that many grandparents are providing £4000 worth of childcare a year.  They do this because they love their children and grandchildren and enjoy spending time with them.  Many older people volunteer at sporting and charity events.  They give their time as trustees of charities so that help can be provided to people of all ages.  In an ideal world we would see people as individuals and not judge by labels – age, gender, ethnic background, religion  etc.  Just as it is a mistake to think all teenagers are bad – they obviously are not – it is also a mistake to write people off because they are old enough to receive a pension.  If we valued everyone for what they do, the world would be a better place.

This week, a well-known local lady – Moira Bruce – did a short video clip on Youtube with the title Older People – a bonus not a burden, as part of a series being produced for the Scottish Older People’s Assembly.  Please follow the link below to see what she has to say.

https://youtu.be/NbQlVCyy3z8

Please celebrate older people – you will be one some day!

Current Events

Website Updates

We have updated some of the items on the Church Finance page and the What’s On page.  We have also updated the Communications section on the About Us page.  Please check them out.

You can now see the Weekly Parishioner online.  Just click on the Newsletter tab above and follow the link.  We hope you enjoy it. Week 14 is now available.

A copy of this week’s national Call to Prayer can be found on the What’s On page.

 

The Order of Service  for Sunday 9 August can be found on the What’s On page

Alpha and Omega

Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters in the classical  Greek alphabet.  In Revelations Chapter 21 verse 6, we find the phrase “For I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end”.  There are 3 different verses in Revelations which refer to the Alpha and the Omega – in Chapters 1, 21 and 22.

In St Mungo’s many people will have noticed the Greek symbols on the front of the pulpit with Alpha (ꓮ) on the left and Omega (Ω) on the right.

The symbols can also be found in one of our stained glass windows.  If you look closely at the top of the Gethsemane window you can see the symbols for Alpha and Omega.  When the Church reopens, please take time to look at this for yourself.

There are many interesting things to be found in our church building and we hope when life returns to normal that you will be able to see them for yourself.  If you want to know more about our building please check out the relevant page on our website.

 

Our First Service Since Lockdown

On Sunday 9 August we held our first Church service in St Mungo’s since Communion in March. Under Government regulations we are limited to 50 people in the building and we really had a good attendance.

The Church looked and felt very different as we were all wearing face coverings and, after using hand sanitizer and providing contact details for Track and Trace, we were escorted to our seats which were all socially distanced. Before the service started our organist, Islay, helped to set the mood through her choice of music. Marie, our Session Clerk explained what was required of us and why. Her assistant, Christopher, demonstrated the one-way system and Sang took photographs so that we know where people were sitting if we are unfortunate enough to have an outbreak.
The service itself was different as there was no singing, but other parts of the service were familiar – the prayers, Bible reading and, of course, the sermon. At the end of the service we all left, following the one-way system, but there was no after Church coffee and fellowship and no hugs from Sang!

A lot of work had been done by the property group to get the Church ready and the systems in place and this work certainly paid dividends as everything ran smoothly. While the congregation went home, this group stayed on to clean and sanitise the Church to keep us all safe. After the service Sang received the following message:-

Thank you all for the lovely service we felt very safe and secure and for all the hard work done behind the scenes
Stephen & Eleanor Barrett

I think that everyone who was there would agree.