Picture by Clint Randall www.pixelprphotography.co.uk

Scottish ‘Good News’ winner goes into UK final

January 12, 2022

A Scottish Episcopal Church which provided school children with tablets to help with online learning has reached the final of a UK-wide competition to find ‘good news’ stories – and it is looking for your support!

The competition was launched by specialist insurer Ecclesiastical to shine a light on churches’ bright ideas and success stories, community heroes and ingenuity in the face of adversity.

St Luke the Evangelist Church in Glenrothes was chosen as the regional winner for Scotland – earning £1,500 to support the church’s work in the community. Its recognition came after providing computers and tablets to local pupils to take part in online learning during the UK-wide lockdown, following a successful application to the Church in Society Committee of the SEC for support from the Child Poverty Fund.

Father Gerry Dillon, Priest of St Luke the Evangelist, Glenrothes and St Finnian’s, Lochgelly, said: “We are delighted to win and very grateful to Ecclesiastical for the award which we’ll be putting towards our AV equipment.

“The AV system will widen access to our community space(s), and to the community groups and services working with people and within our community. It will also make it possible for us to partner with global projects and initiatives who can broaden individual and community horizons.

“This scheme not only helped us partner with the local school to support the learning of children through digital devices, but also to develop parents’ literacy, numeracy and digital skills – which has been an unexpected benefit of this initiative.

“Going forward St Luke’s will continue to be an additional space in the community that will be of use for the ongoing well-being of the whole community, as well as developing nurturing opportunities, especially with local schools and youth groups.”

St Luke’s now joins four other churches in the national final where they can win a further £6,000 as overall winner. Naturally, St Luke’s would be grateful for any support that Scottish Episcopal Church members can give them in the vote to find the UK winner!

“We would really appreciate any support that other churches can give us by voting for us in the final,” said Father Gerry.

Helen Richards, church director at Ecclesiastical, said: “Congratulations to St Luke the Evangelist Church, our regional winner for Scotland. Their efforts to support local pupils who were without access to computers or devices needed for online learning during the pandemic really impressed our judging panel.

“Despite the challenges that the pandemic has brought with it, churches have remained a beacon of hope to the communities they are based in.

“That’s why this year’s theme for our church competition is ‘Good News’! We wanted to help shine a light on those unsung heroes in our communities and the new initiatives that churches have come up with to help those most in need – spreading the ‘Good News’ far and wide.”

Members of the public can vote for their favourite shortlisted church to help decide the overall national winner by clicking here. Voting closes on Tuesday 22 February.

(Our photo shows Father Gerry Dillon with local schoolchildren, receiving tablets)