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The hunt for a new minister to fill the vacancy at Fort William Kilmallie Church of Scotland left by the departure this week of the Reverend Richard Baxter has been put on hold pending the results of a national church-wide review.
The popular Reverend Baxter bid farewell to Lochaber after a final service on Sunday following six years as minister for the combined congregations of Fort William Kilmallie Church of Scotland along with that of Kilmonivaig.
But it leaves a vacancy with no immediate full-time replacement ready for the parishes affected.
Asked to comment on the situation, a Church of Scotland spokesman told the Lochaber Times: ‘Lochaber Presbytery, like all Church of Scotland presbyteries, is currently putting together a draft mission plan which will determine how limited resources should be allocated to congregations over a five-year period.
‘The recruitment process has been put on hold until this work is completed but the presbytery anticipates the vacancy in Fort William will be filled in future.
‘In the meantime, Reverend Elinor Gordon will provide locum cover from next month and team minister, Reverend Rory N MacLeod, will be continuing with his work to support the congregation and parish.’
Fort William Kilmallie Church of Scotland, pictured, is now without a minister following the departure after six years of the Rev Richard Baxter. NO F08 Fort William church
Rev Richard Baxter, pictured, bid farewell to Fort William this week after six years as a local minister. Photograph: Iain Ferguson, alba.photos
NO F08 Rev Richard Baxter