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Sign-up to Advent 2018
God’s gift to us, the Greatest Gift, is the theme of the Church of Scotland’s 2018 Advent calendar.
We invite you to sign-up for a daily email or check our online Advent calendar for some inspiration. Throughout the season, we’ll bring you stories that highlight how church members around the country are celebrating the birth of Jesus and sharing their faith, hope and love with everyone in their communities. Find out how you and your church can take part below.
International United Peace Service 2018
International United Service for Peace 2018 on 11th November 2018.
The service starts at 19:30, entrance is free.
It is exactly 93 years ago that the Scots Church Rotterdam started this tradition. It involves ministers, priests or pastors from various international and migrant churches coming together for a service for peace. Each of the clergy will speak, pray or read from the scripture in their own language, like Russian, Finnish, French, Amharic (Ethiopia), Trigray (Eritrea), Urdu, English and more.
Given that justice and peace are integral components of our Christian faith, it falls to each and every one of us to play our part in pursuing them, both in our lives and in our worship. We would encourage all who can to come along to this service on the 11th of November.
The guest speaker will be Edwin Ruigrok, who has been a Policy Advisor at PAX for over 11 years and previously worked in both Africa and Asia.
Prayer Breakfast 2018-10-20
Songs of Praise
The next Songs of Praise service will be held October 21th 2018 at 19:30 PM.
As you may guess from the title, the main focus of these services will be on singing God’s praise. That praise will be on the hymns that the members of our church have indicated to be their favourites. Services may also include may include hymns that are less well known, and also hymns that have come to us from various parts of the world – reflecting the multi-national face of our church family.
If we have musicians in the congregation who would be willing to get together to play for one or more of these services, we would be delighted to hear from you, as this would increase the diversity of our praise. We are also keen to receive feedback on the hymns we sing and therefore after each service there will be tea and coffee and a chance to chat.
375 Years Schotse Kerk (RTV Rijnmond)
On September 6th RTV Rijnmond did a broadcast about the 375 year anniversary of our church.
You can find the broadcast using the link below. It includes an interview with a member of our church.
Our 375 Year Anniversary!
On the 16th of September we are celebrating our 375 anniversary with an International Lunch.
The 375th Anniversary Service on Sunday 16th September at the usual time of 10.30am. This will be followed by an International Lunch for everyone, at the conclusion of which we’ll have a short Service of Praise in the Church to round off our celebration.
We’re delighted to be able to welcome the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, to preach at this service. In addition we’ll have a number of invited guests – including the oldest surviving minister of the Scots Kirk who was minister here from 1963 until 1971.
A warm invitation is extended to everyone – including past members and those who’ve had some connection with us over the years – to come along on 16th September to be part of our celebration of this event in our congregation’s life. May we all take the opportunity to make ourselves known to someone we don’t know and to share our stories about the Scots International Church Rotterdam.
1643 – 2018 : 375 years in Rotterdam
In the early part of the 17th century there were many Scottish merchants in the Netherlands, as well as sailors and soldiers and, increasingly, Protestants fleeing persecution in Scotland. As Rotterdam gained in importance as a port, so the number of Scots increased and by 1642 they were requesting the city magistrates to be allowed to found a Scottish Congregation in the city.
The magistrates petitioned the States General and after only 5 days they granted the petition and undertook to pay part of the minister’s stipend. The magistrates were instructed to find a suitable building and eventually secured the use of a warehouse in Wijnstraat. Meanwhile the Presbytery of Edinburgh had been asked to appoint a minister to the new congregation and in August 1643 the Rev Alexander Petrie preached before the congregation. On 13th September two Elders and two Deacons were appointed and the Scottish Kirk was formally established.
For most of the following two centuries the Scots Kirk was as much concerned with the education and care of the Scottish community as it was with their worship and spiritual life, establishing both a school and a poor house. The congregation itself grew enormously and by 1694 exceeded 1,000. The city magistrates were (as Rev Robert Fleming wrote) “so kind as to pass an act for the building of a new, large and convenient Church from the foundation, on the south end of the street called Schiedam-Dijk, and vulgarly, from the many Scots Inhabitants there, the Scots-Dijk.” Thus in 1697 the new Scots Kirk on the Vasteland was dedicated and remained the congregation’s home until it was destroyed in the German bombing of Rotterdam in May 1940.
During the War the congregation was much depleted and there was no minister (he having returned to Scotland on the last ship to sail from Hook of Holland). The Dutch Reformed Church took the Scots Kirk under its wing and, after the War, there was some reluctance on the part of the Church of Scotland to re-establish the Rotterdam congregation but, eventually, it was agreed the Rev Muir Haddow would go and assess the situation. In fact, he remained for some 7 years and oversaw the building of a new Church on Schiedamse Vest – the building which the congregation still occupies. In 1996 the congregation changed its name to ‘The Scots International Church Rotterdam’ in order to reflect what had by then become a hugely international community, sharing worship in the Presbyterian tradition and English language.
Today the congregation is part of the International Presbytery of the Church of Scotland – a Presbytery covering some 12 congregations in Europe and 2 beyond. On 16th September 2018 we will mark our 375 years with a special Anniversary Service at which the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, Right Rev Susan Brown, will preach. But we also look forward to the next chapter in our history!
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