Sunday, August 16th–Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan

To view the YouTube video of the “Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan” parade, please click on this link:

Every year, First Presbyterian Church commemorates our denomination’s Scottish heritage with a Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan service, in which participants carry banners representing their clan’s tartan and receive the Church’s blessing.

Because of our current social distancing mandates, we were unable to hold the Kirkin’ service in the sanctuary this year as we traditionally do. Instead, we held a “Kirkin’ Parade” down Highlands’ Main Street and to the Kelsey-Hutchinson Founder’s Park, where Pastor Curtis Fussell conducted a brief service, offering a portion of the Scots Confession and prayer. Duncan Greenlee, as Beadle, carried the great Bible, and Bagpipers Margaret Tooke and Glen Morris led the standard-bearers, pealing out hymns from the Scottish Highlands throughout the route and at the park. For more information on the origins and details of this tradition, please click this link:

During the worship service in the sanctuary, Pastor Curtis and Marty Boone offered a Litany for the Tartans, praising God for the families represented by the tartans and the heritage of the lands of our ancestors. The service also included a Necrology and Memorial Prayer for all those in our congregation who have passed on into the Church Triumphant since last August. Pastor Emily Wilmarth, Kevin Gates and Hope Wilmarth, with the help of Clara and brand-new-to-the-world Elliot, participated in the service from home. They offered the Welcome and Call to Worship, Prayer of Confession and Passing of the Peace.

The service opened with a recording of “Highland Cathedral,” performed as the Prelude by bagpiper Cameron Nixon on August 18th of last year. The anthem from the same day was composer Philip Stopford’s “Christ is Our Cornerstone” directed by Michael Lancaster and sung by the Chancel Choir, with organist Angie Jenkins accompanying.

Pastor Curtis’ sermon title was “Great Is Your Faith” based on a reading of Matthew 15:21-28, regarding Jesus’ conversation with the Canaanite woman whose faith caused Jesus to grant her request to heal her daughter.

Angie Jenkins played the Benediction hymn, “God Be With You Til We Meet Again.” The Postlude, “Scotland, the Brave” was previously recorded and again featured Cameron Nixon on bagpipes.

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