Gazette Letters 25.6.15

editorial image

Catholic Churches

I have just spent an enjoyable week on Barra and North Uist as part of my sixth visit to the Outer Hebrides

Although not myself a Catholic I enjoyed visiting all the Catholic churches in Barra, Vatersay, Eriskay, South Uist and Benbecula. I was impressed by how well maintained each of them was by a congregation to which they are self-evidently important and much-loved. A salutary lesson for those of us who live on the mainland.

Unfortunately, the church at Eoligarry was locked and I missed out on the church at Lochmaddy. A good reason to return one day.

N.L. Denton

West Sussex BN17 6QW

Forlorn hope

I’ve found it’s not always clear what your correspondents are trying to convey when they write on religious matters, but I was in no doubt about the content of the letter from Session Clerk Graham Morrison, of Stornoway St. Columba’s. (Gazette 18.6.15).

Mr. Morrison wrote about the recent decision of the Kirk’s General Assembly to allow those in same-sex partnerships to be eligible to serve as Ministers and Deacons within the Church of Scotland, and he made plain that those who comprise the congregation at St. Columba’s disagree with that decision, and disassociate themselves from it.

I share their view, except that I wonder what mileage there’s likely to be from staying with the Kirk and attempting to reform it from within.

A group calling themselves Covenant Fellowship Scotland are now up and running and of similar mind, seeking to operate within the Kirk and to call it to repentance.

The way things are going I’d tend to regard that as a forlorn hope. I think it would be more sensible to pull the pin and leave.

The last thing that’s wanted here is to see the Kirk eventually splitting in two, one group calling itself the Church of Scotland (Continuing), and the other calling itself the Church of Scotland (Residual). We had enough of that malarkey when the Free Church split.

Keith Fernie

Inverness IV2-3RW

Expensive Governments

It may be not apparent to many, but, how many Governments do we need in our lives?

We presently have one on Edinburgh, one in London, and one in Brussels and to think we managed ok with only one some forty years or so ago.

In my maths does that mean we are now paying for three times as much for people to meddle in, and try to run our affairs?

The above is most likely our number one problem and does not help in the economic climate, of that I am certain.

This week I heard Brussels are going to propose a legislation to try and force men to take a bigger share in domestic housework. Well, in my book that’s interfering with people’s private lives and personal arrangements.

I do not need any Government, or agency to tell me what to do, what to eat, drink, or especially what to say, or decide upon.

Right there is our present problem, and expense, three governments, loads of agencies with folders a plenty but the sad thing is that they all do not even know that they are the problem.

Angus Campbell,

Isle of South Uist

Meningitis Now

Two lifesaving vaccines, including the UKs first Meningitis B vaccine, will be rolled out this summer, the Department of Health has announced.

With newborn babies being offered the revolutionary new meningococcal group B (Men B) vaccine Bexsero via the national health service, from September 1.

To combat the rise in Men W cases in adolescents, all 17 and 18-year-olds will receive the combined Meningitis ACWY vaccine from August.

Meningitis Now and its supporters, who have campaigned for two years to get the ground-breaking MenB vaccine free on the NHS, welcomed the announcement.

We’re delighted that this milestone in the journey to introduce these vaccines and protect our babies and young people from the devastation meningitis causes has been reached.

These measures will save thousands of lives and protect people from losing loved ones to the deadly disease.

The national charity’s award-winning Beat it Now! campaign has relentlessly pushed for Bexsero to be free to all babies via the childhood immunisation programme.

It’s a tribute to our supporters’ selfless and tireless efforts that we have now reached this stage. However, we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that for many the announcement comes too late. We’re here to help them for as long as they need us.

Meningitis Now Chief Executive,

Sue Davie

Our Beautiful Island picture was submitted by reader Thomas Stewart who sent us this snap of one of his geese a (Gordon) with the setting sun behind him.

If you would like to submit an image to this popular feature email us at: with your name, where you are from, what/where the picture was taken and what inspired you to take the picture.