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Revd Joe Hall inducted in Bon Accord, Aberdeen

December 2021 | by Evangelical Times

By the Friday, all the invitations had gone out and plans made, but who would turn up? Would Joe and Susy be there, or the guest speakers? What sort of turnout would there be?

These questions faced the organisers planning the event the following day.

Why the concern? This was to be the largest congregational gathering since the first Covid lockdown back in March 2019, and only a few weeks had passed since the one-metre social distancing rule had ended.

But thanks to the providence of God, all went to plan on 28 August. Around 200 people attended Bon Accord on what was a solemn yet very joyful occasion.

The worship service was conducted by the Presbytery Moderator, Revd David Randall (Falkirk FC).

Taking 2 Timothy 4:1-8 as his text, he emphasised the centrality of preaching in the context of the majesty of God and the loveliness of Christ.

Joe answered the standard questions, was duly ordained with the laying on of hands, and happily inducted to the congregation of Bon Accord.

It was an encouragement to the young new minister to have his three predecessors contribute to the proceedings.

Revd Alex MacDonald passed on his good wishes and reminisced about his own experience in the city centre congregation – a time that he remembered with fondness even if the task seemed intimidating at the outset.

Revd Iver Martin (ETS Principal) addressed the new minister, expressing his joy at seeing Joe installed at Bon Accord. He referred to piety, priority, preaching, and people skills as four things to be mindful of.

He also exhorted the congregation to receive, love, respect, and encourage Joe in the work he has been called to do.

Revd David MacPherson sent greetings from Peru by pre-recorded video, saying he would like to be there but didn’t relish the idea of spending a fortnight in a quarantine hotel at great expense. His watchwords were ‘listen’ and ‘enjoy’.

Further words of encouragement were given by Revd Jerry Middleton, who spoke on behalf of Gilcomston and the wider local churches.

Pre-planned in the light of Covid restrictions, the Kings Community Church building was the venue for the after-church teas where each received an excellent selection of edible goodies in a box.

The celebratory occasion and the timing (at the end of a long period of Covid restriction), made this a special and happy time of fellowship.