CERES PARISH CHURCH CELEBRATES BICENTENARY

CERES Parish Church is celebrating its bicentenary.

The church held a dedication service on Sunday and is planning to hold a number of events over the coming months to mark its 200th year in the community.

The foundation stone for the present church, which replaced a medieval building, was laid on April 21, 1806.

The tower and spire, which are now landmarks for the village, were added in the 1870s although the church has remained relatively unaltered apart from the addition of lighting and two early 20th century stained glass windows.

However, the congregation of the church has changed in recent years, after it was linked, and later united, with Springfield Parish in 1983 and Kemback Parish in 2005.

A claim to fame for the church is that Scottish Television filmed a morning service there in 1989, due to the fact that Ceres Church is one of two remaining churches which can serve communion in the original reformed tradition, using long-tables.

In the current edition of the parish magazine, Ceres Church minister, Rev. Eric McKimmon, said that much had changed in the church's history.

"However, many aspects of congregational life are perennial such as care for the elderly, concern for youth and efforts to upkeep the fabric of the building," he said.

"Most abiding, of course, is the Christian worship that has been offered to God in the church since 1806, and in Ceres for over 1000 years."

The bicentenary events include a Scottish musical evening with Bruce Lindsay in Springfield Church hall on Sunday, May 21, at 6.30 p.m., and an art competition towards the end of the month.

June will see a morning service held in the church with former Ceres minister, Rev. A. Scott Hutchison on Sunday, June 4; a village barbeque and ceilidh on Ceres Village Green on Saturday, June 10; and an open air service on Kemback Green on Sunday, June 25.

There will also be a service with another former Ceres minister, Rev. Mathew Ross on Sunday, August 13.

There will be exhibitions in Ceres Church on September 9,10, 16 and 17 in the session hall, Ceres.

Also, as part of the celebrations the bicentenary committee is running a competition to rename the parish magazine, 'Steeple View', which has been running for around 50 years.