The Kirk Session met on 16th February with what looked like an interesting forward looking Agenda. There was a reasonable attendance with 13 Elders present.

Work in preparation of a Biblical Garden in the grounds of Lauder Old Parish Church were reported to be making steady progress with a detailed drawing of the proposed garden to be included in the church website during March. Funds towards the creation of the Garden have been donated by Mrs Betty Bell in memory of her late husband Martin.

As part of the local mission work of the church – £200 to be contributed to Lauder Resilience Group efforts to maintain and replace the five defibrillators across Lauder and Blainslie. In addition £100 to be contributed to the Lauder Food bank currently housed at Lauder Bowling Club. The funds to come from the Church’s Parish Support Fund.

Initial discussion took place on constructive use of the Doughty Bequest in support of activities for the children of the parish. Elders, who are Doughty Trustees, noted that the management of the funds was not a end in itself to the work of the Bequest but merely a means to the end –  supporting activities for the young of the parish. Discussion to be continued at a future meeting. The Bequest currently holds around £65,000.

The church financial statements for 2020 were reported, showing an increase in spend over income by around £3000. All in all Elders considered this outcome during a difficult year for all churches to be acceptable.

Current membership of Channelkirk and Lauder stands at 363 with around 28 worshippers in 2020 under Covid restrictions. There were 13 funerals and one new member. It was reported that 11 children are directly associated with the work of the church.

Work on identifying maintenance work required for each building continues. Once guide prices are available a priority list will be agreed alongside discussion on what buildings will be required beyond 2025.