Kirk leaders ‘moved’ by 360 imagery reaction
Published on 19 May, 2017
Kirk leaders have been “moved” by the “overwhelming” online response to a series of stunning 360 virtual reality images of Church buildings.
Record levels of interest
Last month the Kirk launched a pioneering project which offers Facebook users the chance to explore sacred spaces of the Church from the comfort of their armchair through innovative 360 degree digital photography.
It was met with unprecedented interest on the Kirk’s Facebook page, with the photo of St Giles’ Cathedral reaching a record 301,000 people.
Other buildings to be showcased so far include Dalmeny Kirk, Crown Court in London, St Matthew’s in Perth and the Assembly Halls in Edinburgh.
Rev Bill Hogg, convener of the committee on Church Art and Architecture, said: “The initial reaction from the many ‘virtual visits’ to these beautiful churches has been encouraging and moving.
"People are not only engaging with the 360 project online but are developing a real desire to experience the atmosphere of the actual buildings. I hope that the project will allow people to realise that our churches can be open and welcoming spaces however you visit them.”
Rev Norman Smith, convener of the Mission and Discipleship Council, said the aim of the project was to allow people from all over the world to enjoy the Kirk’s beautiful spaces.
He added: “Through the 360 filming, the phrase ‘if these walls could talk…’ has become a reality. We want to encourage people to enter these spaces and to experience for themselves their beauty, their majesty and the important part they have played in the shaping of who we are today.”
On the eve of the 2017 General Assembly the latest image is of the famous ‘black and white’ corridor in the Assembly Hall on the Mound in Edinburgh. Added to the original Hall in the later 19th Century, it has witnessed over 100 General Assemblies and played the welcoming corridor for the reconstituted Scottish Parliament in 1999.
Moderator Designate Rev Dr Derek Browning said that the corridor is where the Church of Scotland begins to “welcome the world and meets the world” during the General Assembly week. Public figures such as The Queen, Margaret Thatcher and Desmond Tutu have graced the corridor over the years.