On Tuesday 8th October 2019, the Presbytery of the Western Isles met in Balivanich Hall for the ordination and induction of the Rev. Thomas Penman to the pastoral charge of South Uist and Benbecula Free Church.
The moderator of presbytery Rev. James MacIver, minister of Stornoway Free Church, led the service taking as his focus the words of Psalm 117. Mr MacIver explained at the outset that this short psalm packs a big punch. He proceeded to explain that "the love of God is evident in the Old Testament, and that all people everywhere are called to praise God – a God whose love is steadfast and whose faithfulness endures forever".
After singing some verses from Psalm 36, led by the Rev. Lachie Macdonald, and the completion of the necessary formalities, Mr Penman was ordained and inducted to the ministry.
[Image: Rev. Thomas Penman]
Given the inclement weather in the lead up to the induction, the Rev. Calum Smith, minister of the sister congregation in North Uist, aptly applied that analogy and, referring to Psalm 46, advised Mr Penman to expect stormy patches, periods of beautiful calm, but also some very ordinary days.
Rev. David Macleod, who served as interim-moderator in the vacancy, based his address to the congregation on three scripture verses that had significance in the vacancy. He paid tribute to the congregation’s vision, instructed them to prayerfully expect growth and advised them to allow their minister time to sit at the feet of Jesus.
Following the service and the customary presentations, the congregation enjoyed a time of warm fellowship with old and new friends, tasty treats served by Stepping Stone Restaurant, and fitting and well-crafted speeches from Mr. Penman and from three of his friends in the ministry: the Rev. Robin Gray, the Rev. John Johnstone and the Rev. Benjamin Wilks.
[Image L-R: Rev. Robert Penman, Sue Penman, Mhairi Penman, Mike Penman]
We commit Tom, Mhairi and their delightful little daughter, Deborah, to God in prayer, asking that He will supply all their needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
[Main Image: Rev. Thomas Penman and Mhairi Penman]