Elder honoured for serving his local church for 60 years
Published on 21 August 2023 2 minutes read
An elder has been recognised for dedicating 60 years of his life to his local church and is still going strong.
Hugh Nicholl of Kinning Park Parish Church in Glasgow was presented with a Long Service Certificate by Rt Rev Sally Foster-Fulton, Moderator of the General Assembly, yesterday.
An active member of the Kirk Session, he said he was delighted to have been recognised and "greatly appreciated her kindness" in taking the time to visit with the congregation and give a sermon.
Mr Nicholl, who has attended church all his life and still goes every Sunday, said he believed it was the first time a Moderator of the General Assembly has visited Kinning Park Parish Church in an official capacity.
Parish minister, Rev Marnie Johnston said: "The service was a very moving and a very memorable occasion for Mr Nicholl, who is a remarkable person and very unassuming.
"As the minister of Kinning Park, it was an honour for me to welcome the Rt Rev Sally Foster Fulton and to share the service with her.
"It was a fitting tribute, marking 60 years-service given by our senior elder.
"The Moderator presented him a Long Service Certificate and the congregation gave him a garden centre gift token as a ‘thank you' to mark the occasion.
"In a very moving and fitting sermon, the Moderator spoke of the importance of forging paths and building bridges to the future which God has planned.
"The occasion was a very warm and friendly one and the congregation were delighted to have the opportunity to meet the Moderator and her husband. (Rev Stuart Fulton.)
"It was a happy day which will be long remembered."
Friend and mentor
Mr Nicholl was baptised in Scotstoun West Parish Church in Glasgow.
Growing up in the south side of the city, he attended Sunday School first at Elder Park McGregor Memorial Parish Church and then St Mary's Church, both in Govan.
Mr Nicholl had a long connection with the Boys Brigade for many years, serving as an officer.
Kinning Park Parish Church is the result of multiple unions over the years.
The building of the M8 Glasgow to Edinburgh motorway changed the area greatly with the demolition of older tenement properties and the building of new homes.
A man of very strong Christian faith, Mr Nicholl was ordained as an elder on the 27th of January, 1963 at what was then St Andrew's Plantation Parish Church, now Kinning Park Parish Church.
Over that time he has been a great support to ministers and a friend and mentor to newer elders.
Mr Nicholl has served as fabric convener, treasurer and was the "much-valued" session clerk for 25 years until 2021.
With his late wife, Chris, who was also an elder for 30 years, Mr Nicholl organised a church holiday group for some years.
He had a long and distinguished professional career as an electrical engineer and served as the Church of Scotland's lighting adviser, visiting and assisting many congregations around the country.
In his free time, he enjoys gardening and driving his car.
Ms Foster-Fulton described Mr Nicholl as a "delightful" man.
"Sixty years of sharing his time and gifts, his insights and wisdom, his sense of humour and commitment to community," she said.
"It was a genuine honour to thank Hugh Nicholl in person for his generous service to the Church of Scotland and the community of Kinning Park.
"This is a beautiful milestone and I promised that when he receives his 70-year certificate, I'll come and cheer with the congregation."