‘Amazed and deeply moved’

Milnathort'Rev Dr Angus Morrison, who has been chosen as the next Moderator of the Church of Scotland'Photo ; WALTER NEILSON
Milnathort'Rev Dr Angus Morrison, who has been chosen as the next Moderator of the Church of Scotland'Photo ; WALTER NEILSON

A Kinross-shire minister has told how he is ‘truly humbled’ at being chosen as the next Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

The Rev. Dr Angus Morrison, minister of Orwell and Portmoak Church, will take up the office in May next year.

He said this week that he was ‘amazed and deeplymoved’ to have been selected for the honour.

“I am truly humbled by the trust that has been placed in me,” he said.

“I shall do my utmost by God’s grace to prove worthy of it.”

Dr Morrison, who lives in Milnathort, was born in Glencoe in 1953. As his father worked for the Northern Lighthouse Service, the young Angus went to school in Oban, Stromness and Edinburgh before progressing to higher education at the University of Glasgow. He undertook further studies at Pisa University and London University before a PhD at Edinburgh University’s New College.

Unusually for a Moderator, Dr Morrison was not ordained by the Church of Scotland but by the Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland.

After ministries in Edinburgh and Oban, he transferred to the Church of Scotland and became minister of St Columba’s Old Parish Church in Stornoway.

He has been minister at Orwell and Portmoak Parish Church since 2011.

Over the years Dr Morrison has made a significant contribution to the Church of Scotland, serving as a member of the Church and Nation Committee, latterly on the Europe Group; a member and then vice convener of Panel on Doctrine; Moderator of the Presbytery of Lewis; convener of the Mission and Discipleship Council and member of the Special Commission on same-sex relationships and the Ministry.

In 2005 and 2006, he served as chaplain to the Lord Mackay of Clashfern when he was as Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly, and was Chaplain to the Queen.

Dr Morrison also has a degree in Classics and speaks Italian and Gaelic.

His wife, Marion, is a teacher at Kettle Primary School and the couple have four children aged between 16 and 27.

The eldest, David, is an officer in the RAF, while their daughter Judy is studying for a nursing degree at Edinburgh University and their son Robert is studying a law degree at Aberdeen University.

The youngest, James, is in S4 at Kinross High School.

The Moderator Designate is chosen by a committee of 51 members, including representatives from each presbytery, the three previous Moderators and three members nominated by the General Assembly.

“It is my great desire to encourage the Church in its vital God-given mission to the people of Scotland and beyond,” said Dr Morrison.

“In these troubled times the peace and unity of the Church are dear to me and I shall endeavour to promote them in every way I can.”