2024 General Assembly starts this evening

The General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland will take place in St Columba’s at the top of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile from this evening (Monday 20th) until Thursday 23rd May.

The General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland will take place in St Columba’s at the top of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile from this evening (Monday 20th) until Thursday 23rd May.

The assembly will give church leaders time to discuss the work that has taken place and make decisions on the future of the church. Representatives from every presbytery across the U.K. will gather to discuss church business and hear reports from various committees and boards. Over the course of the week, they will also be joined by guests of the Church and other organisations.

The Moderator for this year’s assembly will be Rev Callum Macleod.

Callum was born and brought up in Point on the Island of Lewis. He came to know the Lord in 1979 and professed faith in the congregation of Point in October 1980. He subsequently served as a Deacon and an Elder in the congregation.   

He worked as an installation engineer with BT from 1974 until 1997. Callum is married to Catherine, and they have two sons. Graeme is married to Mairi, and they have two children, Lucas and Jessica, and live in Garrabost, Isle of Lewis. Stuart is married to Shona, and they live in Inverness. 

He studied in what was then the Free Church College from 1997 to 2000. He was ordained and inducted to the congregation of Shawbost on 27th October 2000 and served in Shawbost until his retirement last year. He served as Clerk to the Presbytery of the Western Isles for twelve years. He served the Central Church in the following roles – as a member of the Training of the Ministry Committee (now the Board of Ministry), as a member and Chairman of the Sustentation and Ministry Committee, as a member and Clerk of the Home Missions Board, as a member of the Mission Board, and as a member of the Board of Trustees.  

He was appointed Assistant Clerk of the General Assembly in May 2015 and then appointed Principal Clerk of the General Assembly in May 2016 and is still serving in that capacity.   

The General Assembly

The General Assembly is the highest decision-making body within the Free Church and had its first sitting in 1843. It’s during these assemblies that presbyteries discuss regular business and sometimes make historic decisions that have implications for future generations. It is now in its 180th year.

Lord High Commissioner

The King has approved that HRH Prince Edward, the Duke of Edinburgh be appointed as His Majesty’s Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland in 2024.

The Lord High Commissioner is the Sovereign’s personal representative to the Annual General Assembly. He attends on behalf of the Sovereign and this year will make a speech to the General Assembly on Wednesday.

The Lord High Commissioner first addressed the General Assembly in 1925. The position has a reduced role within proceedings, largely maintaining a symbolic connection between the secular and sacred through the adherence to the Establishment Principle by the Free Church. 

Reports

All committee and associated board reports have been published and are available to view here.

Timetable

The timetable for the week can be viewed here.

Live Streaming

Public viewings of the assembly are due to be streamed live on the Free Church website.

Social Media

You can follow proceedings on all of our social media pages using #fcga24