Bishop praises ‘confident and happy’ Bute congregation

Kevin Pearson, Bishop of Argyll and the Isles in the Scottish Episcopal Church, with St Paul's rector Andrew Swift.
Kevin Pearson, Bishop of Argyll and the Isles in the Scottish Episcopal Church, with St Paul's rector Andrew Swift.

THE Episcopalian Bishop of Argyll and the Isles has praised the “confident and happy” congregation at St Paul’s Church in Rothesay during a visit to the island.

Bishop Kevin Pearson attended Holy Communion at the church on Sunday morning, and said that while the Rothesay congregation may not be the largest in his diocese – which stretches from Kintyre to Stornoway – they made St Paul’s “the kind of place you would want to come back to”.

“Small congregations can easily lose confidence,” he told The Buteman after the service, “but in Rothesay, although it’s not the biggest congregation, they are happy and confident in what they’re doing.

“In some places you can detect a feeling, which I’m told is very much a ‘west coast’ thing, that a congregation has always been small and it’s just going to continue to decline because that’s the way things have always been.

“I don’t believe that’s true, and it’s interesting to watch the change in mindset, and see people start to believe that while their congregation may be small, they have something to offer, and to see how things turn around as a result.”

* More from our interview with Kevin Pearson in the next issue of The Buteman, on sale from Thursday, March 1.