What’s a Kirkin’? Come find out!
Bagpipes, drums and tartan banners! So, what’s the "Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan" worship service all about?
A Little History – Scottish Heritage
The Kirkin’ is a celebration of the Scottish roots of the Presbyterian heritage. This tradition originated in the United States during World War II, when it was introduced by the late Peter Marshall at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. Kirking, from the Scottish Gaelic word kirk, which means church, and in this usage means ‘blessing.’ A kirkin’ can be thought of as the gathering of families to enter into the House of the Lord to worship and praise. The colorful woven tartans that are displayed during the service are symbols of the love and togetherness of family. Worshippers are encouraged to reflect with thanksgiving on their own family and cultural heritage, whatever it may be.
Coming Together After a Busy Summer
The Kirkin’ is a special way of joining our Westminster family and friends together after many have been apart over the summer. So do come on Sunday, September 11th - be sure to invite guests and introduce them to the Westminster family. You’ll be greeted with “a hundred thousand welcomes” or, in Gaelic, “Cead Mille Failte!” After worship, enjoy a time of fellowship in the Assembly Hall. Refreshments, including home-baked shortbread, will be served.
We Welcome Rev. Neta Lindsay Pringle, Guest Preacher
We are pleased to welcome the Rev. Neta Lindsay Pringle as our guest preacher. Rev. Pringle is a graduate of Union Theological Seminary in New York City and has served churches in New Jersey, New York, Maryland and Delaware. Now retired, she and her husband, John Potter, live in Wilmington. Delaware. Pastor Jim Reisner grew up in her father's church in New Jersey and they include Martha and Jim are included as part of their family and their two sons are among their nine grandchildren. Rev. Pringle’s father was born in Alexandria, Scotland, and she has been to Scotland four times. The most recent trip was in April to visit their grandson who is now in his Junior year at the University of St. Andrews. She shares that “the Kirkin’ of the Tartan is a fun way to revisit my Scottish heritage.”
Anyone who would like to carry a tartan banner during the service should contact David and Sarah Hershey at (518) 462-4727. If you are able to bake shortbread (recipe provided if desired) or help with the reception, please contact Valerie Willison Shanley at (518) 366-8747 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Valerie Willison Shanley is an Elder currently serving on the Westminster's session. Due to her own Scottish heritage, she loves the opportunity to bring the Kirkin' o' Tartan event to others, continuing the tradition her Dad helped start at Westminster many years ago. In addition to volunteering at church, you can usually find Valerie enjoying family and friends, traveling, reading, fitness activities or time at her lakeside home