Kirk Session Moderators

An Elder or member of the Diaconate may moderate a meeting of their own Kirk Session although there are certain provisos:

  • that the Elder or Deacon has undertaken and successfully completed approved training for the role;
  • that the Elder or Deacon has discussed this training with their minister prior to applying for it;
  • that their minister has supplied a reference in support of their attendance at this training; and
  • having attended training the Kirk Session agrees in advance of the occasion that the Elder or Deacon is required to moderate.

For clarity, the parameters for the role of an Elder or Deacon who has been nominated by their minister to moderate their own Kirk Session is one that is to occur on an infrequent basis and is not intended to permit the minister of a charge to abdicate, on a more or less permanent basis, the responsibility of moderating the Kirk Session. Furthermore, the role, and this training resource, is not for those who will act as Interim Moderators in a vacancy situation, which is a completely different role.

For more information please refer to the training resource below, which has been developed for use in delivering an approved training session. It has been designed so that an individual designated by Presbytery can locally facilitate a training session without requiring to draft in an outside trainer with specialised expertise, for example from one of the Church of Scotland’s central departments.

Two of the handouts in the training resource are sample templates that can be adapted to suit your situation

We have developed some videos that can be used to supplement the training and are referred to in the training resource:

John Chalmers talks about the Act of the General Assembly that details the scope of this role.

Rosie Frew shares her ideas about effective moderating.

Lynne McEwen shares her ideas about the agenda of a Kirk Session meeting.