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New minister arrives in town

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By Donald Turvill
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New minister arrives in town

AN EX-oil and gas services engineer has been appointed as the new leader of a group of Dumfriesshire churches.

Elsie Macrae, 42, right, is set to be ordained tonight and inducted into the linked parishes of Moffat, St Andrew’s, Kirkpatrick, Juxta and Wamphray.

The Malawi-born mother-of-two left her job in the oil and gas industry in 2016 to begin a new role within the Church of Scotland. Previous to that, she studied theology at Highland Theological College in Dingwall.

Elsie said that since arriving in the region just a few days ago, she and her family have been “overwhelmed by the love the people have shown.”

She added: “Things might be different with so many restrictions in place but I believe the Gospel is reaching many more homes than ever before.

“I am looking forward to walking with the people in the community, sharing the Gospel and the love of Jesus.”

Reflecting on the journey that brought her to the role, she recalled: “For eight years I resisted the call to ministry until one Friday evening in April 2016 when the session clerk at New Deer St Kane’s Parish Church in Aberdeenshire called to say there was no one to preach that Sunday and the only person she could think of was me.

“As they say, the rest is history.”

Ahead of Elsie’s ordination, Donald Walker, session clerk at St Andrew’s Parish Church, said: “We have been seeking a new minister for two years and we are delighted that Elsie is joining us and we are looking forward to embarking on a new phase of our journey as a church.”

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