Everyone is welcome at all services in Greyfriars


COIMHEARSNACHD GHÀIDHEALACH

Bidh seirbhisean Gàidhlig gan cùmail gach Dòmhnach aig 12:30f, an dèidh na seirbhis Bheurla, agus bidh fàilte romhaibh uile.

Tha aoradh Gàidhlig air a bhith a’ tachairt ann an Dùn Èideann bho chionn 1704. Aig an àm sin chaidh ullachadh a dhèanamh le Àrd-Sheanadh Eaglais na h-Alba airson seirbheisean Gàidhlig a bhith air an cùmail airson na saighdearan Gàidhealach a bha stèidhichte aig Caisteal Dhùn Èideann.

Thar nam bliadnachan bhon uair sin, tha aoradh Gàidhlig air a bhith air a chuartachadh ann an caochladh coimheanalan air feadh a’ bhaile, gus a’ bhliadhna 1979, nuair a chaidh an coimheanal gu Eaglais Ghàidhealach an Tolbooth agus an Naomh Eòin, far an robh seirbheisean Gàidhlig Eaglais na h-Alba an uair sin gan cùmail, a-steach còmhla ris a’ choimheanal seo fon ainm Eaglais Ghàidhealach nam Manach Liath agus an Tolbooth.

Tha e inntinneach gu bheil an dà àite mu dheireadh anns an robh seirbhisean Gàidhlig aig Eaglais na h-Alba anns a’ bhaile roimh 1979 an-diugh nan àiteachan ainmeil ann am beatha a’ bhaile: ’s e Eaglais an Tolbooth an diugh an “Hub” agus ’s e an Eaglais Ghàidhealach ann an Sràid Chambridge (far an robh seirbheisean Gaidhlig air an cùmail bho 1948 gu 1956) an Taigh-cluiche “Traverse”.

Nuair a leig an t-Urr. Euan Mac’illeEathain, ministear Eaglais nam Manach Liath, a dhreuchd ann an 1982, thug an Seasan iarraidh air, a chùmail an seirbhis Ghàidhlig.

Tha an teagasg anns a’ choimheanal Ghàidhlig againn, mar a tha anns a’ choimheanal Bheurla, gu math eadar-eaglaiseach, le Clèirich (chan ann a-mhàin bho Eaglais na h-Alba ach bhon Eaglais Shaor agus bhon Eaglais Shaor Leantainneach) agus Càitligich a’ searmonachadh agus a’ gabhail pàirt san aoradh. Ach tha an t-seinn stèidhichte ann an nos tràidiseanta nan eaglaisean clèireach, le sailm gan seinn san t-seann-nos agus le cuir a-mach na loighne as aonais mòdh-ciùil sam bith eile. Bidh an coimheanal na shuidhe ann an Tranns Eòin, ri taobh uinneag ghlainne-dhaithteach Naomh Eòin a rinn D.Y. Camshron, agus amar-baistidh aosmhor.

Tha luchd-labhairt dùthchasaich agus luchd-ionnsachaidh a’ chànain anns a’ choimheanal. Mar as trice, thig daoine gun Ghàidhlig, uaireannan fiù ’s beagan Beurla, a’ blasad na spioradalachd agus fàilte. ’S ann à Canada, Sealainn Nuadh agus America a tha a’ mhòr-chuid den luchd-turais a’ tighinn, a’ lorg seòrsa de sheirbhis air an robh an sinnsearan eòlach mus deach am fuadach bho chionn dà cheud bliadhna.

Tha dà àm sònraichte ann an clàr-bliadhna a’ choimheanail Ghàidhlig: Seirbheis Ghàidhlig na h-Àrd Sheanaidh, nuair a tha Moderator na bliadhna a’ tadhal oirnn, agus An Òraid Ghàidhealach Bhliadhnail. Tha an Òraid Ghàidhealach air a bhith ann fad 25 bliadhna agus rè’n àm sin, thàinig mòran sgoilearan a bhruidhinn air iomadh cuspair, a’ togail fòram cudthromach airson cuspairean Gàidhealach. Bidh fàilte air duine sam bith don dà thachartas.

B’ e Roibeart Burns fhèin a thuirt “In Heaven itself I’ll ask no more, than just a Highland welcome.”

’S e sin an t-amas aig an t-seirbhis Ghàidhlig ann an Eaglais nam Manach Liath.

Orders of Service

Please download our Orders of Service below:

January 14th

January 7th

Gaelic language services are held on Sundays at 12.30pm following the English language service, and everyone is welcome to attend.

Continuity of Gaelic worship in Edinburgh has been maintained since 1704.  It began when a provision was made by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland for services for Gaelic-speaking soldiers stationed at Edinburgh Castle.

The Gaelic Service moved from church to church around Edinburgh over many years until 1979, when Highland Tolbooth and St John’s, through union with Greyfriars Kirk became part of Greyfriars Tolbooth & Highland Kirk – a name which reflected the new presence of a Gaelic congregation in Greyfriars.

It is interesting to note that the last two places of Gaelic worship, before it came to Greyfriars in 1979, have emerged as notable public places in the capital’s cultural life:  Highland Tolbooth St John’s is now The Hub; and The Highland – formerly in Cambridge Street, 1948 – 1956 – is now the Traverse Theatre.

In 2013, the union of Greyfriars Tolbooth & Highland Kirk with Kirk o’ Field meant that the Greyfriars name would have become unwieldy if it included all the congregations it represented.  It was therefore agreed that the Kirk’s name return to the simpler ‘Greyfriars Kirk’ but that the Gaelic language be included in as many logos, publications and communications as possible.

When the Rev. Ewen MacLean, minister of Greyfriars Tolbooth and Highland Kirk retired in 1982, the Kirk Session invited him to continue to be responsible for the Gaelic service.  Following his death in 2000, the Rev. David MacKay Beckett, minister of Greyfriars Tolbooth and Highland Kirk, encouraged the Gaelic congregation to continue weekly Gaelic worship, and to seek help from Gaelic-speaking ministers and preachers.  An enthusiastic response resulted in a number of wonderfully willing people to take turns leading the Gaelic Service and therefore keeping the tradition alive.  Their services are much appreciated and respected.

The preaching is ecumenical, as is the congregation:  Church of Scotland; Free Church of Scotland; Roman Catholic; Free Church Continuing.  The Order of Service holds firmly to the much-loved precenting of the psalms without musical instruments.  The congregation sits in the St John’s Aisle, alongside the splendid D Y Cameron stained glass window of St John, and an ancient baptismal font.

Native speakers and learners of Gaelic make up the congregation.  Often, however, visitors with no Gaelic – and sometimes just as little English – come to experience the spirituality and the welcome.  It is mainly from Canada, New Zealand and the U.S.A. that tourists arrive, seeking to know the kind of service which would have been familiar to their ancestors, cleared from Scotland generations ago.

There are two major events in the Gaelic church year:  The Gaelic Service of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, when the Moderator visits, is held in Greyfriars Kirk; and The Annual Highland Lecture has been a prestigious event for 25 years, speakers of outstanding quality creating a significant forum for Highland and Gaelic subjects.  Both events are open to all and can be found on the Kirk Calendar.

It was Robert Burns who said, “In Heaven itself I’ll ask no more, than just a Highland welcome”.  The Gaelic strand of Greyfriars Kirk constantly strive to honour that sentiment.