Thought for the Week – 11.7.19

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Happy St Drostan’s Day, July 11.

‘Who?’ I hear you ask. Well, he was reputed to be a nephew of St Columba though his name is of Pictish origin. For reasons lost in the mists of time, Drostan became the patron saint of Glen Urquhart. Tradition tells that he preached the Gospel in Urquhart, and supported himself by cultivating Croit Mo Chrostain —St Drostan’s Croft.

The reason this information is being shared with you is that it is important for everyone to know something of the Christian heritage of where we live. For without a basic knowledge of Christian theology, of Biblical stories and of how the Church over time impacted upon the people and the land – for good or ill – future generations will be able to understand significantly less of our culture, geography, sociology, history and politics.

For example, without a knowledge of the Easter story, how can you interpret the crucifixion paintings of the Prado? If a student lacks even a simple understanding of Reformation theology, how can he or she grasp the importance of faith to people in the Covenanting wars?

The study of religion is not the same as bringing someone to faith. Religious education is the job of schools and universities; faith formation is for the Church. Where Church and society overlap is in the observation that people today do not even know what they don’t believe in.

Surely, it is in all our interests to promote knowledge of faith and belief. I trust St Drostan would agree.

Reverend Dugald Cameron,

Kilmore and Oban, Church of Scotland.