Orkney to get 'the best of both' with appointment of new ministers
Published on 29 November 2022 2 minutes read
Orkney parishioners are getting the ‘best of both' as new ministers Rev Kerr Wintersgill and Rev Moira Taylor-Wintersgill follow their joint call to share two full-time roles on Orkney.
The couple, who met and married whilst training for ministry, were ordained and inducted as joint ministers of Milestone Community Church, and introduced as joint Mission Development Officers for the Orkney Islands.
Friends, family and fellow ministry candidates travelled by sea and air to join the couple for the special occasion, with others watching remotely online – not a first for the Wintersgills as friends and family had also joined their lockdown wedding remotely.
In addition to their parish duties at Milestone Community Church, which serves the Birsay, Harray and Sandwick areas of Orkney's West Mainland, the two will have a presbytery-wide role, as mission development officers. This is a creative role that will include helping train church members to lead worship, looking at digital resources to keep congregations connected and help develop and promote the 58-mile St Magnus Way pilgrimage route.
Mrs Taylor-Wintersgill grew up in the Edinburgh area and studied theology at New College in her home city, while Mr Wintersgill is originally from Glasgow and is a former student of Highland Theological College, part of the University of the Highlands and Islands.
A time of change
The couple arrive in Orkney at a time of significant change for the Church of Scotland on the islands, with Orkney Presbytery set to be amalgamated into the new North East and Northern Isles Presbytery in the new year and the development of a single parish which will replace the present multi-parish system.
Mrs Taylor-Wintersgill said: "Orkney is a vibrant, outward looking community with a long Christian Heritage. We are excited about meeting people, discovering what God is already doing here and hearing folks' hopes and aspirations for the church in Orkney moving forward. We believe that God has called us to minister jointly in both roles as we have very different gifts and can work to our strengths in both our Parish and Presbytery roles…hopefully the best of both of us."