University announces distinguished line-up for Sunday Chapel Services

University announces distinguished line-up for Sunday Chapel Services

The University of Aberdeen has this week announced the line-up for the new spring-time programme of Sunday Chapel Services to be held in King’s College Chapel.

The chapel services will feature a range of fascinating speakers, from Richard Holloway, one of the best-loved and most outspoken figures in the modern church, to the more traditional views of Mario Conti, Archbishop of Glasgow (who delivers the first service). The pair have crossed swords in the past and their services promise to give very different insights into the Christian faith.

Further services will also include a minister who has just returned from being a military Chaplain in Iraq and a minister who has just returned from working with orphans in Peru. The Moderator of the Kirk’s General Assembly, the Right Reverend David Lacy, is also set to preach at the University’s annual Founder’s Day service.

This promises to be an insightful season of services for believers (and non-believers) from all denominations.

The University’s Chaplain, Reverend Easter Smart is delighted at this year’s remarkable and distinguished preachers who will be delivering services to the Sunday congregations and said: “It is wonderful that the University of Aberdeen has attracted such an interesting line-up of preachers for it’s 11 o’clock term-time Sunday services in King’s College Chapel.”

The full season of services includes:

Mario Conti, Archbishop of Glasgow (former Bishop of Aberdeen, who has a long friendship with the University) will deliver the first service this weekend (on February 5). The Most Rev Mario Conti will lead an inspirational inaugural service for our Spring programme. An ex-bishop of Aberdeen and an honorary graduate of the University of Aberdeen, Mario Conti was appointed Archbishop of Glasgow in 2002 and has since become one of the esteemed figures of the modern church.

On February 12, the annual Founder’s Day service will be taken by The Right Reverend David Lacy, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, one of Scotland's leading churchmen. Mr Lacy was born in Inverness and educated at Aberdeen Grammar School and The High School of Glasgow. He has served on various Church Boards and Committees at national and presbytery level.

The Reverend Louis Kinsey of St Columba’s Church of Scotland, Bridge of Don, will deliver the service on February 19. Rev Kinsey - one of Aberdeen’s most dynamic ministers - spent his childhood in Zimbabwe before joining the British Army in the late 1970s. Following a period of military service spent mostly in the Kings Own Scottish Borderers, he went to Edinburgh University to study Divinity and to train for the ministry. He has been the minister of St Columba’s Church for 15 years, having been a probationer minister in Elgin. He recently returned from a tour of military duty in Iraq where he served as a Territorial Army Chaplain for five months, returning last August.

On February 26, Aberdeen graduate, Reverend Edward McKenna, a charismatic and insightful speaker, will preach at the University. He has a keen interest in “New Mission”, and was part of an extraordinary Atlantic Crossing and BBC film in 2001 with the MV Amazon Hope - a medical ship which is currently providing primary health care in the Peruvian Amazon.

Rev McKenna was born in Zambia and brought up in the Scottish Borders before working with single homeless people in Edinburgh and then training as a Church of Scotland Minister. He has worked for Scripture Union Scotland, served as a Parish Minister in East Lothian, and is currently minister of South St Nicholas, Kincorth. He has just returned from taking Kincorth Academy Pupils youths to work with street children in Peru.

The Very Reverend William Canon Anderson an experienced preacher who has often taken part in ecumenical services will deliver his service on March 5. He was most recently Parish Priest of St Francis of Assisi in Aberdeen. He has also been previously an Administrator of St Mary’s Cathedral and Chaplain to the Roman Catholic students at the University. He particularly enjoys working with young people and has been involved in everything from spiritual direction to teaching Latin.

The Right Reverend Richard Holloway, Primus, Scottish Episcopal Church 1992-2000, will take the Incorporated Trades Service on March 12 and will give readings at the service from two Chronicles 10.1-11 and Matthew 11.25-30. Right Rev Richard Holloway treated a packed audience to an inspirational and unforgettable event at Word 05 last year. Back by popular demand, the University is delighted to welcome him to King’s College Chapel. He was Gresham Professor of Divinity in the City of London till 2001 and recently stood down as the Bishop of Edinburgh. Rev Holloway held the position of Chair of the BMA Steering Group on Ethics and Genetics and was a Member of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority. He remains a Fellow of the Royal Society, and is Head of the Scottish Arts Council.

He is a well-known writer and regular broadcaster, broadsheet columnist and widely read author, he is an extremely powerful speaker. He has written for many newspapers in Britain and has presented his own series on BBC Television and Radio. He is the author of more than 20 books on religion and ethics, including Godless Morality, Doubts and Loves and On Forgiveness.

The Sunday Chapel Services will be brought to a close on March 19 by the University’s Chaplain, Reverend Easter Smart. Rev Easter Smart works at the heart of the University community fulfilling a pastoral role for staff, students and alumni of all faiths. A daughter of Aberdeen graduates, Reverend Smart grew up in Scotland and emigrated to the Baltimore, Maryland when she was twelve. She returned to the UK when she was ordained in 1996. She has worked in Colinton Parish Church, Edinburgh and St. Columba’s Church of Scotland in London before taking up the post of Chaplain to the University of Aberdeen in 2000.

All of the Sunday services begin at 11.00am and are open to all denominations. Everyone is welcome. The congregation will be given the opportunity to meet and discuss any issues with the preachers following each service and refreshments will be served to guests.

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