Farm equipment parked outside Edinburgh's St Giles' Cathedral to mark 'Harvest Thanksgiving' service
Published on 29 September 2023 1 minute read
Visitors to Edinburgh's Royal Mile are in for a surprise this Sunday when they see a combine harvester and a tractor parked outside St Giles' Cathedral.
The unusual sight on Parliament Square is part of a special Harvest Thanksgiving service to honour food producers and highlight the need to reduce food waste.
The service from 11am-12pm is being attended by representatives of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS).
It will feature a display of ‘wonky' seasonal fruits and vegetables, typically rejected by supermarkets, to create a vibrant display.
The produce is being donated by local farmers from East and West Lothian and will be later given to charities that support people in need.
The service will be led by Rev Sigrid Marten, Associate Minister of St Giles' Cathedral.
She said: "The gathering in of the harvest has been celebrated over thousands of years by many cultures and religious traditions.
"This season is a time for giving thanks to God and reflecting on the stories Jesus told of sowing and harvesting as parables of our spiritual growth and the spreading of God's word of love.
"We are very excited that we have been able to work closely together with the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland to draw the attention of passers-by, not only to our Harvest Festival Service on Sunday which they are welcome to join, but also to highlight the vital role that Scottish farmers play in providing great quality food.
"Bringing farming equipment to the Royal Mile is one way to remind us of our dependence on those who work hard to produce our food.
"We are also very grateful to local farmers for all the donations of fruit and vegetables that will be used to decorate the sanctuary of St Giles' Cathedral for Harvest Sunday which will be later given to people most in need."
Very Rev Dr Angus Morrison, Moderator of the General Assembly 2015-16, will be preaching during the service.
A member of the Chapel Royal who kept watch over the late Queen's coffin while it lay at rest in St Giles' Cathedral last September, the retired minister is a former RHASS chaplain.