The Parish of Mayfield Salisbury is now vacant   
Check back for updates!!


A sole nominee has been announced. Full Information HERE. 



Previous Updates:

Parish Profile 

DEADLINE for applications - 10th August 2020 



To be displayed as prominently as possible at the church building for seven days, posted publicly on website or social media, and by email or letter and/or by phone so as to ensure that all members of the congregation receive intimation in some form or other.

Notice is hereby given that the Vacancy Procedure Committee of the Presbytery of Edinburgh proposes that in the current vacancy at Mayfield Salisbury the Protocol agreed by the Commission of Assembly on 7th July be put in place to allow the prescribed divergence from Act 1 2015 and Act 8 2003, in order to facilitate the vacancy process. This action will proceed unless at least four persons, who are either communicant members of this congregation of Mayfield Salisbury or full members of Presbytery, together or separately submit to the Presbytery Clerk a request for this proposal to be considered at the next meeting of the Presbytery. Any such request must set out the relevant reasons.

You should submit any such request in writing to Rev Marjory McPherson, St Andrews Manse, Main Street, West Linton, EH46 7EE by 10th August 2020.

If four valid requests are received, then agreement to use the Protocol will be suspended and the approval of Presbytery will be required.

Marjory McPherson, Presbytery Clerk

The Protocol to which reference is made can be viewed here:


Over the past few months the Nominating Committee has met several times courtesy of Zoom which on the whole has worked very well for us.  As you may be aware the Commission of the General Assembly recently issued guidance to assist congregations and Nominating Committees during the Covid-19 pandemic.  You will wish to know that in the light of this and the interest expressed in the vacancy to date we have set a deadline of 10 August for applications which is now advertised on the CofS website.

The Nominating Committee will have to rely on different methods for assessing candidates to those normally used but we are confident that we will be able to make progress.  When we reach the point of a sole nominee preaching we will do our best to ensure that all those entitled to vote will be able to see and hear the nominee conduct the same act of worship and be able to participate in the vote.  Depending on the Covid-19 restrictions applying at the time, this part of the process may take longer than usual and we will issue advice and guidance on the process when we reach that stage.


Election of the Nominating Committee
The Kirk Session  have decided to have one joint service of worship on Sunday 1 March at 10.00am. This will enable worshippers from both services to attend and participate in the election of the Nominating Committee. This is a vitally important part of the process in the search for our next Minister so please do come along and join in. Put the date in your diary!      William Mearns

Permisson to call received
Permission has been gained from the Presbytery of Edinburgh to appoint a Minister of Word and Sacrament to be inducted on a basis of Unrestricted Tenure. 


Preparation of Electoral Register
We are beginning the process of electing a Nominating Committee, whose task it will be to identify  a single candidate to be our new minister.  In order to elect the Committee we must make up a Register of those who can vote (or stand) in the election.  We are required to make the intimation below.  There is also some further background information below which will also appear in the weekly intimations and in the next issue of the parish magazine Grapevine.
Notice is hereby given that in view of the vacancy in this congregation of Mayfield Salisbury, the Kirk Session is about to make up an Electoral Register. This Electoral Register is a list of those who will be eligible to vote when the time comes to elect a Nominating Committee, and subsequently in the election of a new minister.
If your name and current address are already on the Communion Roll, then you will automatically be placed upon the Electoral Register. You will need to take no further action.
If you are a regular worshipper here, but are still a member of another congregation, and you wish to participate in the election of a minister to this congregation of Mayfield Salisbury, then you should arrange to hand in to the Session Clerk a valid Certificate of Transference before the Kirk Session meets. 
If you are a regular worshipper here, and not a member of this or any other congregation, then the Kirk Session can add your name to the Electoral Register as an ‘adherent’. If you wish the Kirk Session to consider this, you should obtain a form from the Session Clerk, complete it and return it to him before the Kirk Session meets.
The Kirk Session will meet in the Bill McDonald Hall, Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church on Tuesday 28 January 2020 at 7:30pm to make up the Electoral Register.
Revd Neil Gardner, Interim Moderator 
Please note Session Clerk Charles Garland’s contact details are: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,  07762 908 343 or through the church office.

The Nominating Committee - a users’ guide
Any congregation which is temporarily without a minister is inevitably thrown back on its own resources.  That is where we are just now.  We are of course very fortunate to have the preaching of Revd Helen Alexander and the leadership of Revd Neil Gardner, our Interim Moderator.  They offer continuity through, respectively, the high quality sermons in our weekly worship and invaluable guidance and advice, especially to our elders in the Kirk Session.  Kay, Hillary and William also support us through all of their usual work (and more), and we are hugely grateful to them for bearing the additional burden which the vacancy creates.
But in this period of change and transition it is ultimately up to us, the members and worshippers at Mayfield Salisbury, to determine what the church of the future will be like.  There is much work involved in this, some relatively visible and some of which may perhaps seem a bit mysterious.  In addition we will each have our own priorities, cares, and hopes for the future.  I encourage everyone to share their thoughts and to ask each other if they have any questions - and particularly to ask the elders who, as members of the Kirk Session, have responsibility for a number of decisions.  We are all keen to make the transition into a positive experience; equally we need to acknowledge that the path may not be clear or easy at times.  
The next phase of the transition is to elect a Nominating Committee.  (There will be those who say that if the answer is to create a committee then the question isn’t a good one, but please don’t stop reading just yet…)  This will be made up of 13 members of our congregation, and the core of their task is to receive applications for filling the vacancy, interview the applicants, and come up with the name of a sole nominee as our new minister.  He or she will be invited to preach and a vote of members will be taken immediately afterwards.  That, then, is the task of the Nominating Committee.  Their work may take some time and it is conducted confidentially.  The rest of us will need to be patient, and trusting.
But how is the Nominating Committee elected?  Who can stand?  Who can vote?   
Who can vote?
Taking these in reverse order, only people whose names are on the Electoral Register can vote.  An early job is for the Kirk Session to finalise the Register.  It will contain the names of everyone who is currently registered as a member of Mayfield Salisbury, but an invitation will be extended, by means of intimation, for anyone else to be added, either as a communicant member or as an adherent (which may include young people who have not yet been confirmed, and any others who are regular worshippers).  If you are not on the current Roll, or are not sure if you are, this is your opportunity to make sure you have a vote.
Who can stand?
The answer as to who can stand as a member of the Nominating Committee is that anyone on the Electoral Register is eligible.  (There are some exceptions, such as ministers and employees of the Church of Scotland.)  You need a proposer and a seconder.  But that is only the formal position.  More importantly, we need to ensure that the membership of the Committee is as broad as possible so that as many views and perspectives of those in our congregation as possible are represented.  Please therefore consider standing yourself.  Or, if you think that someone you know would be a good candidate, please encourage him or her to think seriously about it.  The value of having all views represented cannot be underestimated.  If you are unsure about what’s involved, just speak to an elder or one of the staff.  A question will not be interpreted as a statement of intent, so please don’t be shy about this.
How is the Nominating Committee elected?  
We expect that this will be by secret ballot (though the final decision is for the Kirk Session to make), and the hope is that we will be in a position to hold the election after a service on a Sunday in the middle or second half of February.  We are currently aiming for Sunday 16 February but confirmation of this, along with further details, will be intimated nearer the time.
What can I do?
For the moment please feel free to use the intervening time to consider the work of the Nominating Committee.  Do you think it might be for you?  Do you think a person you know might be a suitable member?  Do you have any questions?  It may be that the thing you are unsure about is something that others also want to know, or indeed it may be something that no-one’s yet thought of and needs addressing.  Either way, this is a task which belongs to, and affects, all of us and we each have a role we can play if we wish to do so.


Message from The Revd Dr Scott S. McKenna
Sincere thanks to the congregation of Mayfield Salisbury for their warm appreciation and good wishes on my departure.   It was difficult to leave such an incredibly vibrant and stimulating environment with so many kind, caring and generous people.  I am grateful for the thoughtfulness of the congregational gift.
It was a particular and true delight to see so many of the congregation at my induction to Ayr:  St Columba.   That was a real treat and meant so much to me.
Be assured of my continuing good wishes for the congregation of Mayfield Salisbury.   Scott

Session Clerk, Charles Garland, welcomes the Interim Moderator.

This morning we are delighted to have Reverend Neil Gardner with us to lead our worship.  Neil is our Interim Moderator, and he, along with Reverend Helen Alexander, will guide us through our vacancy period.  He is Minister of Canongate Kirk, The Kirk of Holyroodhouse and Edinburgh Castle, and so his Sundays are already busy.  Most of Neil’s work with us may therefore be in ways which may seem less visible, at least to those who are not elders.  He will Moderate our Kirk Session meetings, and will advise us on the creation, and then the work, of the Nominating Committee, whose job it will be to identify a suitable nominee to be our new Minister.  There will be more information on that in the coming weeks.  Of course, this is a process that we have not been through for many years now, and Neil’s guidance will be invaluable and also a great pleasure for us.  We look forward to working with you and to getting to know you better. For today, we are very grateful to you for being with us to take our service, and you are most welcome.
Welcome for Reverend Helen Alexander by Charles Garland, Session Clerk
Good morning and welcome!  Today, as you know, marks the start of our vacancy period after Scott’s induction at St Columba’s in Ayr last Thursday.  Those of you who were able to go will have seen the warm and heartfelt reception he received.  The church was absolutely full.  The congregation was clearly eager for him to begin his time with them.  We also discovered that the internet’s prediction of 1 hour 40 minutes for the trip to Ayr will only apply if you have police outriders the whole way.  But we arrived in the nick of time, and many thanks to the Ian McCallum Fund, and to Wendy for organising the bus and for providing us with sandwiches and biscuits in the traffic jams.  So on this, his first Sunday as minister in Ayr, we wish Scott well.
We also welcome back Hillary and Craig after their wedding in the US last weekend.  Many congratulations!
Now, as we walk along the pavements this week, and spend time in the parks, the trees are a very visible sign of the season.  Green leaves are becoming yellow, red and orange, then swirling in the gusty air to the ground.  The branches become barer and we begin to see the structure of each tree, all trunk and bark and branch, as it prepares for winter and for next year.  Is that a bit like the process we are going through?  Scott has left, and we are now getting ready for a new phase of our collective life here.  In this process, we retain our core selves - our trunk and branches.  In fact all of that becomes more visible.  We can see better who we are as a church community, which will be so important in our search for a new minister.  
However, we need a continued source of sustenance and nurture to ensure that we thrive in this transition phase.  We are therefore absolutely delighted that Reverend Helen Alexander has agreed to join us.  She will be preaching today and most Sundays during the vacancy, and Reverend Neil Gardner, our Interim Moderator, will be with us next week.  Helen has generously come to us having retired earlier this year after a decade as Assistant Minister at St Giles.  I have tried in vain to find a dictionary which defines ‘retirement’ as taking up a new post, and so we are enormously grateful to you, Helen, for giving up your time for us.  We are looking forward to getting to know you better in the coming weeks and months, and to you leading our worship through our transition period.  You are most welcome!

The Parish of Mayfield Salisbury is now vacant.

Revd Dr Scott S. McKenna’s Announcement at the Kirk Session Meeting 
The Minister outlined some of the changes which are likely to arise. MSPC is in good heart and his reason for accepting St Columba’s invitation is to seek a new challenge and also a concern not to stay over-long in one place.  Among the strengths of MSPC the Minister pointed to experienced and dedicated staff and he also acknowledged the support and encouragement of Session.  

Announcement of Sole Nominee - The Reverend Dr Alexander Forsyth

sandyfAt a meeting held at Edinburgh on 8 September 2020, the Nominating Committee chose the person who they wish to propose to this congregation of Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church to be our new minister. The name of the person proposed is The Reverend Dr Alexander (Sandy) Forsyth.  

Arrangements have been made for Sandy Forsyth to conduct public worship in Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church on Sunday 4 October 2020 at 10.00am. 

The full notice may be found HERE

Vacancy Information

The Parish Profile is HERE

Manse photos here.

Local Church Review

Interim Moderator 
Revd Neil N. Gardner
Neil may be contacted by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
or by phone: 0131 556 3515
Locum Preacher 
Revd Helen Alexander
Helen may be contacted by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
or by phone: 0131 346 0685.

During the ministerial vacancy at Mayfield Salisbury, we welcome the Revd Neil Gardner,Minister of Canongate Kirk as Interim Moderator. He will conduct the services on the morning of Sunday 3 November.
We also welcome the Revd Helen Alexander, formerly Assistant Minister at St Giles’ Cathedral, as Locum Preacher. Helen will principally conduct the Sunday services during the vacancy period. 
During this time, please contact the Pastoral Assistant, Kay McIntosh, for pastoral enquires email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone: 0790 326 6307.
For all other general enquiries, please contact the Church Manager, William Mearns in the first instance by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone: 0780 801 1234.

Online Offering

Contact Information

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church,
18 West Mayfield,

0131 667 1522 / 0780 801 1234

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Scottish Charity Number: SC000785


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